Well hello there Kinkermaniacs…..look folks would you permit me to stray off topic before we begin here? Thank you, see, we have let social media turn us into a society of sociopaths. I mean it, the way a lot of people act online is pretty despicable and not a way they would ever act in “real life”…..only thing is, this IS real life as nearly everyone has computers and communicates with people in some way using their computers. The reason I’m bringing this up as my last list was very divisive and caused plenty of conversation which is great, I love that. I had people saying things like ” I wouldn’t have put this on the list man, but I’d put this in instead” Perfect way to disagree and it led to a very civil conversation about horror movies……..Then we had people saying I should kill myself, that I’m a……well I’m all the insults you can imagine. So I would reply with something along the lines of ” Come on man it’s an opinion piece” That somehow led to me being accused of throwing my toys out of the pram. I’m not sure I understand the etiquette here…..am I supposed to sit back and laugh at folk telling me to die? I mean, it looks like this stuff keeps me up at night but it doesn’t….I’m simply pointing out sociopathic behaviour that has no place in Kinker Korner. We are a happy bunch who can argue and discuss peacefully and that’s the way it will remain….I’m too old for all the other nonsense so it’ll just be deleted. With that said I’ve also had great feedback both positive and negative from the Kinkermaniacs and I love you for it. Now let’s get on with the list…..thanks for reading my rambling…..let’s have a Kinker party!!!
Ok so the horror remake is notoriously difficult to pull of, there are far more awful ones to choose from than there are good ones as I’m finding out here in this Kinker Korner suggested by “Positive Pete Fraser” You have to pay respects to the original whilst also making it different enough to stamp your own name and style onto the movie. So let’s take a look at the bad, the bad and the ugly remakes in the wonderful world of the horror genre.
11. Halloween: Year-2007
I like Rob Zombie, I really do. I grew up on White Zombie and his solo music too, I also think he’s intelligent and talks well about music, entertainment in general and horror movies…….so what is it about his movies that just don’t click with me? I don’t get it, they’re dark, twisted, gory and often surreal but I can’t put my finger on what doesn’t do it for me. The original Halloween by director John Carpenter is a masterpiece of minimalist horror that production company Platinum Dunes should learn from. Less is often more in horror. It’s one of my favourite movies of all time so a remake of it was always going to be a tough sell for me but I was genuinely willing to give it a chance. Realistically in my opinion it’s actually a better movie than a lot of people give it credit for……which is a strange thing to say as it makes my list. It’s not on here because it’s a poorly made movie, the cinematography is actually good and the casting is solid. Tyler Mane is an excellent adult Michael Myers and the white mask is one of the best the series has ever seen……which is important to me. So…it makes the list because half the movie is spent exploring Michael’s childhood and the things that were only mentioned in the original. It took all the mystique and mystery away from the character. There could be no debate about what happened in his childhood anymore, it’s right there…..for so much of the movie. It just didn’t sit well with me and frankly bored me for the most part. I thought there was real potential for him to nail the sequel but that was a whole bunch of watery crap.
10. The Wicker Man: Year-2006
This is either one of the worst horror movies of all time….or one of the greatest dark comedies of all time. Nicolas Cage gives his normal manic performance…..actually no he doesn’t, he dials it up to 11 and possibly 12 in some scenes as he screams and yells and kung fu kicks his ways through this neo-pagen monstrosity. I’m in the minority here but I feel the original British horror/thriller is highly overrated, not bad just not particularly good but it’s like The Exorcist compared to this stinking remake. Most of you reading this will know about the hilariously bad scene with the bees but there are plenty more where that came from. Cage basically yells his way through the movie (particularly into children’s faces) and does some of the best/worst fighting in any movie ever. Neil Dabute directs this jobby and he manages to escape the blame because Cage cops it all….at least Cage’s performance is entertaining in some way so it gets pass marks for that.
9. The Amityville Horror: Year-2005
Like Ryan Reynolds sculpted body but hate his nice, charismatic personality? Then this is movie for you as it involves plenty of the former and none of the latter. At least that’s what Michael Bay and that other fella’s production company Platinum Dunes were going for but Reynolds is just so inherently likeable that he’s woefully miscast in this far too polished remake of the tense 1979 ult classic. There’s a horrible and needless backstory added in here involving cliche after cliche that nobody could possibly care about. Again, horror is at it’s best when it’s keeping you guessing….this movie gleefully spells it out for you. Dull, devoid of scares or tension and all a bit pointless. Still….those abs though.
8. Shutter: Year-2008
I really enjoyed the 2004 original that came out of Thailand due to it’s brilliant use of haunting imagery, sound design and periods of nerve shattering tension. It’s a great idea too, strange ethereal images begin to appear in a photographers work. The images themselves are a little cliche (long dark haired woman) but it works and that’s all that matters. The remake starring Pacey from Dawson’s Creek (that’s his real name) takes all of the positives mentioned and throws them out the window, instead going for poor acting and a complete lack of any form of tension. I guess maybe they thought that would work. The far east would have a legitimate cause to start a war with America due to their remakes. It’s as if there is a covert attempt to mock and punish them for having the gall to create good movies outside of Hollywood and in a foreign language. What were they thinking??!! All joking aside the acting in this is just awful and even the creepy imagery is too slick to be effective. Just a dud, the original is highly recommended though.
7. The Omen: Year-2006
Another in the list of pointless remakes. It’s just a newer version of exactly the same film…..lame references to the original all over the place and a pale imitation of the performance by Gregory Peck. Liev Schreiber tries and he’s not a bad actor but he certainly doesn’t get much help from director John Moore. With uninspired and dull cinematography and a frankly boring screenplay this poor effort is about as pointless as they come. I literally can’t think of any part of the movie that I could discuss with someone like “oh remember the bit when?” it’s that dull. All the subtlety in the Damian character is gone as they opt for a very obvious evil child look rather than the original’s sweet looking looking kid with a hidden evil. Just nope.
6. House Of Wax: 2005
A remake of what is essentially a remake as 1953′ House Of Wax was a new take on 1933’s Mystery Of The Wax Museum this one doesn’t really follow the plot of either and to it’s credit puts it’s own stamp on things. Unfortunately that stamp is boring and filled with dumb characters. This had a lot of media attention due to the involvement of the inexplicably popular Paris Hilton. The mid 00s may well have signified the decline of western civilisation as popular culture became obsessed with dumb, rich and untalented oxygen thieves. Not much has changed sadly but I have a feeling the mainstream will get tired of these vacuous dullards and spit them out and be done with them. Back to the movie, there is a really cool death scene involving Hilton but that’s really the only decent part of the movie. Elisha Cuthbert and Chad Michael Murray….and most of the cast supposedly provide the eye candy so there’s that to fall back on if your brain decides to commit suicide while your watching this annoying flick.
5. Prom Night: Year-2008
It may sound childish but a slasher movie generally needs to have good kills, some tension, blood (Halloween is the rare exception) and it’s exploitation movie making. This means it’s certainly not for everyone and it has niche appeal to gore hounds and horror nuts like myself and probably you reading this. The remake of Prom Night tries to appeal to the mainstream and therefor tones everything down to the tamest of tame. Jamie Lee Curtis starred in the violent original and she’s likeable and believable in horrible situations so it worked pretty well, it’s a damn decent slasher movie. The remake however, stars Brittan Snow who fails to garner the same sympathy. The bigger than most slashers budget shows with some well shot scenes but that doesn’t make up for the predictable and tiresome content.
4. When A Stranger Calls: Year-2006
A remake of a decent 1979 slasher that plays on the old urban legend of the babysitter and the man upstairs. Camilla Belle stars as the babysitter and has the range of …..she has very little range basically (I had written a joke there but it was in poor taste and not suitable for this site). She gets a series of increasingly sinister phone calls from a deranged serial killer although strangely has the same blank expression for all of them. It’s mostly set within the house and the set design is actually really well planned and it’s shot well but much like the last entry on the list it just can’t make up for the boring and poorly acted script.
3. Psycho: Year-1998
In 1960 Alfred Hitchcock redefined horror with a bone-fide classic masterpiece of tension, pacing and shocking twists. In 1998 Gus Van Sant decided to do a shot for shot remake for reasons only he knows. I would imagine it’s a vanity project from the usually fantastic director and it failed badly. The twist in the original was unique for it’s time and when watching a shot for shot remake where you know everything that’s going to happen, you just sit there, bored and waiting for the scenes you already know……it’s bizarre. Anthony Perkins was inspired as the handsome but tortured Norman Bates, playing him with a gentle and polite exterior but hiding a sinister side that would come out with a bang later in the movie. So who did we get in the remake?……..Vince Vaughn…….yup. Ironically it’s probably a more laughable performance than all of his comedy roles put together. I’ve never understood his appeal and he is frankly ridiculously poor in Perkins role. Oh one difference they made was to the famous shower scene……Vaughn has a wee chug while he watches her. So……there’s that.
2. One Missed Call: Year-2008
State of that poster……looks like it’s squeezing oot a jobby, not the scariest thing in the world. Ok the original movie directed by legendary Japanese director Takeshi Miike is hardly a masterpiece but it’s a solid and very watchable movie with plenty of atmosphere and quality sound design. The original also stars Kou Shibasaki which instantly makes it infinitely watchable……she’s…..let’s just say I like her more than a little. The remake stars….Solomon Grundy?…no wait….Shannyn Sossamon, that’s the one. She’s more wooden than Peter North and frowns her way through this scareless, humourless, lifeless remake with an equally vacuous supporting cast. Awful use of sound and a frustrating ending leave me with nothing positive to say at all really…I’m trying. Regular readers will know I’m generally positive, this is my first negative list but this movie is a dud. Unsurprisingly it did ok at the box office……it shouldn’t have.
1. The Eye: Year-2008
If you read my scariest movies list you would have seen my gushing over the original from Hong Kong/Singapore. The Pang brothers created a deeply unsettling, terrifying and investing movie with a likeable protagonist and some of the best set pieces I’ve ever seen in a horror movie. Fast forward six years and America is at it again, the butcher knife was out and ready to to cut up the original. Jessica Alba is the star of this one and although she’s very beautiful and quite amiable she just doesn’t have the presence to carry a movie on her own. She doesn’t convey the vulnerability and fear that Angelica Lee managed in the 2002 original. This remake gives us shady cgi all over the place, poor attempts at recreating some of the set pieces from 2002 and far worse pacing and dialogue. A remake paler than a Scottish Albino.
There we go folks, another list in the bag. Thanks again to Pete Fraser for the suggestion. There were plenty to choose from anyway. Thanks for staying with me while I rambled at the start…..it wasn’t aimed at the Kinkermaniacs obviously….you lot are great. As always if you have a suggestion hit me up @swing_kinker or @BigGlasgowComic Cheeeeeeeers. xx