And the Oscar Goes To… Not a Clue

Currently browsing the "remake" tag.

Review: Wrath of Man

I’m sort of hit and miss when it comes to Guy Ritchie flicks. Wrath of Man falls somewhere in the middle of the road for me. The film is a hallmark Ritchie dark and stylish revenge thriller that follows a mysterious character nicknamed “H” (Jason Statham) who takes a job at a cash trucking company that moves hundreds of millions of dollars around Los Angeles every week. It’s an English-language remake of a 2004 French thriller Le Convoyeur aka Cash Truck starring Jean Dujardin (The Artist). Wrath of Man is director Ritchie’s third remake, and his fourth collaboration with Statham. So if you’re a fan of Ritchie and/or Statham, you can’t go too wrong watching Wrath of Man, though brace yourself for a high degree of carnage.

Review: Downhill

If you head into Downhill expecting a raucous, LOL comedy filled with humorous gaffes and charming banter between Julia Louis-Dreyfus and Will Ferrell, you’re in for an uphill climb. Downhill is a slow, occasionally poignant, occasionally funny remake of the critically-acclaimed Swedish dark comedy Force Majeure. If you saw the 2014 Swedish film, you probably saw the better version.

Review: The Lion King (2019)

Can you feel the love again?

In the circle of life that is cinema, The Lion King is back in all its original story glory, with a couple of new songs and stunning visual effects. The “reimagining” of the 1994 animated classic blends live-action techniques with virtual reality tools and photo-real digital imagery to create an all-new computer-generated medium that resembles something of a cross between traditional animation, Animal Kingdom and Mr. Ed. The added layer of ‘realism’ makes the light stuff lighter – and the dark stuff darker – in and around the fictional landscape of Pride Rock, somewhere in Africa.

Review: Cold Pursuit

Cold Pursuit triggered a chilling case of deja vu. Not just because it’s another Liam Neeson revenge thriller. But because I’d seen the exact same movie before, in 2014 – a foreign film out of Norway called In Order of Disappearance (“Kraftidioten”), about a mild-mannered snowplow operator named Nils Dickman who sets out to avenge the mob-related murder of his son. Cold Pursuit is an American remake, made by the same director (Hans Petter Moland), with a few minor alterations. And I mean minor. The main character’s name has been changed to Nels Coxman (Neeson), and he’s a snowplow operator in Colorado. The narratives, the action, the motivations, the gallows humor, and the high body count remain essentially the same, as do the creatively varied ways in which people die.

Ben-Hur

Ben-Hur revisited is the best movie for the faith-based crowd since Gods of Egypt, and I say that with tongue firmly in cheek. Both are really weak. Like the 1959 original starring Charlton Heston, the 2016 remake tells the epic story of Judah Ben-Hur, a Jewish prince falsely accused of treason by his adopted brother, Messala Severus, an officer in the Roman army. After years enslaved in the galley of a ship, Judah returns to Jerusalem seeking revenge (and a reunion with his wife), but after an epic 3D chariot race against Messala, Judah finds redemption instead.

21 Jump Street

Okay, this one is really quite simple. 21 Jump Street is cheesy, dorky and crude. But it’s also kinda funny. So if you’re a fan of Harold and Kumar-type humor, then chances are you’ll enjoy this campy, satirical reboot of the ’80 TV show that put Johnny Depp on the map. If you’ve never heard of Jump Street – or you can’t stand H&K – then skip this one for sure. And if you’re thinking of taking the kids on a nostalgic trip down memory lane ’cause the tv show represented mostly good, clean drama (at least in the early years), then be advised: this movie is an action-comedy that more than earns its R rating. In other words- it’s definitely not for the pre-teen crowd.

Footloose

Ah, to be 16 again… if even for an hour or two. That’s kind of how I felt watching the soundtrack of my youth playing out on the big screen – albeit with a contemporary twist – in this remake of the 1984 classic Footloose. I’d forgotten just how many hit songs the original movie generated: “Footloose”, “Almost Paradise”, “Holding Out for a Hero”, “Let’s Hear it for the Boy”… hmmm, where did I put that (vinyl) album?

Straw Dogs

Arthur

Arthur, oh where to start? It’s a remake of the 1981 Academy Award winner. Yep, nominated for 4 and won 2. It starred Dudley Moore, Liza Minnelli and Sir John Gielgud. And it was a HUGE hit. 30 years later, we get Russell Brand, Helen Mirren and someone I never heard of named Greta Gerwig in the role made famous by Liza. Oh, and there is Jennifer Garner. The story is basically the same. Arthur is a lovable, hard-partying super wealthy Peter Pan who gets an ultimatum from Mom: marry Susan (Garner) who is a her hand-picked dream daughter-in-law or give up his fortune. Only Arthur doesn’t love Susan, and just when he has grudgingly accepted the inevitable proposition, he meets a poor girl who steals his heart.

Another Vampire Enters the Fray

I found this posted today on the Syfy Wire and couldn’t be happier. I loved Dark Shadows. And Johnny Depp as Barnabas! He can suck my blood any time.