Monday, July 28, 2014

Movie Remakes and Sequels - Don't Reward Mediocrity

A writer writes!

As I get older in life, I notice that movies from my youth are being remade.  The obvious reason is to financially take advantage of those who were not around when the original movie was a financial success.  That seems like lazy movie making. There are plenty of script ideas out there as numerous writers feel they have a story that should be made into a movie.  But instead of risking cash on a new idea, producers and the movie industry would rather remake movies or do numerous sequels to an original movie.  Give the public the mediocre safe movies.

Over the years, some of the remakes have been quite good.  But, more times they are not.  Unfortunately the public at large tends to reward the mediocrity of remakes or sequels by paying unoriginal prices for the same movie or the same story line with a few plot changes.  Among the better remakes was the 1990s remake of "Cape Fear".  The remake featured the artistry of Robert De Niro.  How can you go wrong with De Niro in a remake?  Among the better sequels was "Godfather Part II" and although some didn't like it, I thought "Godfather III" was also good.

Of course some characters such as James Bond 007, seem to fit the sequel quite well.  They tend to be another chapter in the outrageous life of the main character.  Also, I think we are now into the sixth or seventh Batman movie??  Those movies get a pass!  Although I've never watched one all the way through, "Harry Potter" films seem to fall into the area where the audience will keep coming back for more even if the film just has scenes of the main character going back and forth to the bathroom.

After I watch some films, I do wonder "what were they thinking?"  Now I look for movies that contain new or different subject matter.  A new treatment of an idea or a character who really has something meaningful to say.  What happened to all the Great movies that would come out each year?  Movies where the story and the acting, not the special effects was why you went to see it.  How many different ways can you blow up something? I think I've counted 213 so far from movies I've seen in the past years.

Instead of paying your $5 to $12 for regurgitated ideas, hold out for a movie that has something to say about the human condition and experience.  Don't reward mediocrity and a rehashing of what worked before.

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