Archive for July 29th, 2010

More often than not remakes are a bad idea. Once in a while they work out, everyone knows the classic movie, The Maltese Falcon (1941) is actually a remake of a movie of the same name form ten years before. They are based on a Dashiell Hammett novel and are both worth seeing although the Humphrey Bogart version is far superior to the original.

The remake of The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo is in pre production and Let The Right One In re-titled Let Me In is already in the can. Fortunately the proposed Americanisation of Oldboy appears to have been abandoned but Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance (2002) has been suggested for the remake treatment as has Battle Royale (2000) and The Orphanage (2007). If rumours are true there are remakes of Suspicion (1941) and The Birds (1963) on the way. I propose a new law making it a capital offence to mess with Hitchcock movies!

The proposed remake of one film did get me thinking though. Flight of the Navigator (1986) was a family film whose main objective was probably to cash in on the success of E.T. (1982). Not a bad family film, but I’m really not sure what a remake can offer. A movie that really should be remade however is The Last Starfighter, made in 1984 on the back of the success of the Star Wars Trilogy and utilising early CGI, the idea was far better than the resultant movie. It really is a fantastic concept let down by the limitations of the effects of the time and a commercial attempt to be too family friendly.

Teenager Alex Rogan (Lance Guest) lives in a trailer park with his mother and kid brother. Like Luke Skywalker he dreams of doing something with his life but finances stand in the way of his college plans. His only interests appear to be his girlfriend Maggie (Catherine Mary Stewart) and playing an arcade game called Starfighter. The aim of the game is to “defend the Frontier from Xur and the Ko-Dan Armada” When Alex achieves the record score on the game he is recruited by the games inventor to “defend the Frontier from Xur and the Ko-Dan Armada” for real!

With too much time spent back home and not enough in space the battles really lack any vision or imagination and animation although groundbreaking was still inferior to the model based space scenes from the original Battlestar Galactica TV show from the late 70’s. Despite all this the film isn’t without its charms. With the right casting and some decent space set action a remake could really work.


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