Hollywood Remakes

Dr Peter Han Area 49 Lead Scientist Hollywood RemakesHollywood has already remade or sequelized many of the classic sci-fi/fantasy films of the 1980s including Conan the BarbarianPredator, Red Dawn, Tron, The Terminator and most recently RoboCop. But none of the retreads reached the creative heights of the originals and what’s even worse for the major movie studios many failed at the box office.

There are unique challenges when remaking a classic or cult-classic film, not the least of which is overcoming the skepticism of the original movie’s often fervent fan base, many of whom grew-up watching and re-watching the film and analyzing and overanalyzing it to the point that they now consider it to be an integral part of their childhood.

RoboCop Hollywood Remakes

Naturally the studios are trying to tap into that very fan base, as well as draw-in younger moviegoers with a modern take on an old tale, but it doesn’t matter how talented the filmmakers are or which actor is cast in what role, in the eyes of those aforementioned fans a remake is still just a remake, even if it’s a good one, and when compared to the original “classic” will almost always come up short.

One way Hollywood can avoid this dilemma is to stop remaking classic films and start remaking bad ones. A perfect example is About Last Night, another ‘80s redo which opened the same weekend as the new RoboCop and beat it at the box office despite being in 1,100 fewer theaters. Comparing the two films can be tricky because their budgets — and expectations — are so different: RoboCop cost $100 million and About Last Night $12.5 million according to Box Office Mojo, and while the former film was the remake of an avowed classic, the later was not.

Most modern moviegoers have never heard of or don’t remember the original About Last Night, and if they do they probably recall it being a pretty mediocre movie. Either way the filmmakers behind the remake win.

And in the spirit of remaking mediocrity I would like to suggest another movie from the 1980s — The Sword and the Sorcerer. So good it’s bad the film features a roughish hero, a monstrous evil sorcerer and one of the coolest weapons in motion picture history: a  three bladed sword that shoots two of its blades like missiles. Like missiles! It’s so incredibly awesome you don’t care how stupid it really is.

Fans of The Sword and the Sorcerer would relish a remake and could care less if the filmmakers altered the story or reworked the characters because whatever they did would probably be an improvement over the original.

So long as they keep the title, and that badass sword.

Dr. Peter Han

The Sword and the Sorcerer One Sheet Hollywood Remakes