At the moment if a new film isn’t a sequel it’s a remake. Most of these remakes are pointless and just exercises in making money for the studios. But there are some films that perhaps could be remade and make more of an impact the original. Here are three films that I think could do with a remake.
1. ‘Rhinestone’ 1984: This is a film that starred Dolly Parton as Jake a down on her luck country singer who makes a bet with an unscrupulous club own that she can turn anyone into a country music star that he choses. He picks Nick a loud mouth New York Cabby played by Sylvester Stallone who is tone deaf and “hates country music more than liver”. This is not a great film. Okay it is a bad film the most memorable thing about it is that Sly sings. To be fair he did such a good job of going from awful to not bad that he had to disprove rumors that his voice had been dubbed by his brother Frank (who is a singer, and plays a street singer in ‘Rocky’)
Why should it be remade?: The main plot is formulaic but the sub plot would resonate with audiences today. While making Nick into a ‘star’ Jake realizes that it is his individuality that will win her the bet, and that the reason she is stuck singing in urban cowboy clubs is that she suppressed her own individuality. A remake could emphasize this for modern times of manufactured artists who all sound the same and act the same.
2. ‘Death Watch’ 1980: Roddy, Harvey Keitel, a man with a camera implanted in his brain is hired to film an undercover documentary of Katherine, Romy Schneder, who is dying from a terminal illness that she doesn’t know about. The footage is shown on a TV for people to enjoy. This is a great film but it suffers from its late 70’s view of the future and although the story holds up the look and feel of it seen very dated.
Why should it be remade?: It predicted our obsession with reality TV. The idea of someone being watched was later the focus of ‘The Truman Show’ and ‘Ed:TV’ but the darker undertone of this watching someone die of a mystery illness would echo real life events such as Jade Goody opening her test results live on ‘Big Brother: India’ to find that she had the cancer that killed her. It could also be the sort of film that reignites story telling.
3. ‘Wait Until Dark’ 1967: A drug smuggler gives a doll containing heroin to a stranger at the airport to evade capture. He doesn’t know what is in the doll and leaves it at home with his wife, a blind woman, who is then terrorized by criminals attempting to get it back. This was Audery Hepburn’s last starring role and her last film till 1980. It is a claustrophobic film that works on most levels. Alan Arkin is ground braking as the ringleader of the criminals but it is a film that shows its age, it also suffers from an annoying child.
Why should it be remade?: Well okay it has been remade once as a TV movie starring Farrah Fawcett Majors and her then husband Lee Majors. Also in 2000 a film was based on it. But the stage play is always popular and it could do with a bit of an update. One that has been changed in the TV version and modern productions of the play is that diamonds replace heroin as what is being smuggled (this is due to the price of heroin not being what it was in 67) but a more modern version could work. Especially without the annoying child.
Those are my three suggestions. I think any of these would be better than a remake of 1980’s ‘The Naked Bomb’ starring Steve Carell or Robert Pattinson, Hayden Christionson and Matt Smith in a remake of ‘The Deer Hunter’ two treats scheduled for 2015.