Cinema #13: Hollywood Horror Movies: Originality Goes Bye-Bye
Recycling is good when it’s saving the environment, bad when it’s an excuse for laziness. Hollywood seems to be incapable of coming up with an original idea for a horror movie – they are constantly either “re-imagining” classics from the 70s and 80s, or ripping off a foreign film. I can’t for the life of me figure out why.
A common excuse is that, since it costs so much to make a film, investors are more likely put their money in a “sure thing” versus something novel. In other words, the brilliant foreign horror movie [REC} (2007) cost just over a million to make; whereas, the shitty Hollywood remake called Quarantine (2009) cost 15 million. It’s a lot more expensive here – so we can’t take chances.
Well, I don’t buy it. Once upon a time, Hollywood made some damn good horror – ORIGINAL horror – and the same risks were involved. It’s a gamble, but every once and a while, if you’re willing to take the chance on something fresh and new, huge profits can be made. Movies like Halloween and The Sixth Sense far exceeded expectations, but wouldn’t exist if producers weren’t willing to take a chance on new ideas and new talent.
So, I’ll stop stating the obvious now, and proceed to the Retrospace rundown of recycled Hollywood horror. Read it and weep.
The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (70s recycled)
Jessica Biel looked good, but why make this movie? The grittiness that made the first one great (almost like a snuff film) was totally gone.
The Grudge (Asian recycled)
I thoroughly enjoyed this remake; however, it was identical to Ju-On without the subtitles. Americans hate to read.
The Ring (Asian recycled)
See comment above.
Rob Zombie’s Halloween and Halloween II (70s and 80s recycled)
Zombie took the Halloween movies and made them his own… so much so that it wasn’t Halloween anymore. So, why even call it Halloween in the first place?
The Omen 666 (70s recycled)
The definition of pointless remakes. Took out all the evil, and replaced it with lameness. Great job, Hollywood.
The Amityville Horror (70s recycled)
I guess if you’re planning on remaking every single good 70s horror film, this was going to get remade eventually. May as well get it over with.
A Nightmare on Elm Street (80s recycled)
Nice try at starting the franchise again. They were so busy seeing dollar signs, they forgot to actually make it good.
Friday the 13th (80s recycled)
Jason can run fast in this one… other than that, pretty much the same thing.
The Hills Have Eyes (70s recycled)
I actually enjoyed this one as much as the original, but it’s still just another remake.
Last House on the Left (70s recycled)
Wes Craven has remade nearly every movie he’s done – he’s going to run out soon. Waiting for The People Under the Stairs remake.
Let the Right One In (Scandinavia recycled)
At the time of this writing, it’s not been released. I’m sure it will be awful.
Quarantine (European recycled)
[REC] was one of the best horror movies I’ve seen in a long, long time. Butchered and ruined by our friends in Hollywood.
Prom Night (80s recycled)
This wasn’t that good the first time around – even worse the second.
Sorority Row (80s recycled)
My Bloody Valentine (80s recycled)
Okay, like Piranha, the 3D element did add something to the film; however, it’s still a remake.
The Wicker Man (70s recycled)
I still have not forgiven Nicholas Cage for this godawful trainwreck.
Psycho (60s recycled)
Perhaps the biggest WTF remake in history.
Children of the Corn (80s recycled)
Dumb dialog, no scares, horrible direction, bad acting… need I go on?
The Fog (80s recycled)
I actually paid money to see this in a theater. I walked out, it was so boring. I should’ve known better.
April Fool’s Day (80s recycled)
They took a lame movie, added billions of dollars, copied I Know What You Did Last Summer, and Presto! Utter crap.
Dawn of the Dead (70s recycled)
Started out strong, but got kind of tiresome. Should’ve just left it alone, or (God forbid) try something original and see how it turns out.
The Woflman (1940s recycled)
I could go on and on (i.e. The Crazies, The Hitcher, etc.), but I think you get my point.