Generally movie remakes have a bad name despite Hollywood’s insistence on making them. However in my experience there are a few that while not always improving on the original, at least do a good enough job to be worth seeing, without insulting the memory of a classic. Find below a few I personally have enjoyed.
Little Shop Of Horrors
Although not familiar with the Roger Corman original, this Steve Martin, Rick Moranis, John Candy starring musical is a riot … very memorable tunes and great practical effects. I really need to watch this again… soon!
Was really expecting this to just not get what made the original so good – but it ramped up the gore and violence to epic proportions, had a great cast and was scary … maybe not as tongue-in-cheek as the series is famous for, but still felt like an Evil Dead movie.
The Texas Chainsaw Massacre
Am I alone in thinking this version rocks? Tons of gore (which the original lacked, even though I know that wasn’t the entire point) a perfectly mad performance by R. Lee Ermey and a twenty something bunch of ‘victims’ you don’t immediately hate.
Miracle On 34th Street
Charming with a great performance by Richard Attenborough. A star making turn by the where is she now Mara Wilson (see also Mathilda). Haven’t seen original but this was a perfect Christmas treat.
Am I cheating by including this? A deserved genre classic with a (possible) career best from both Pacino and DeNiro, and yes it’s a remake of TV movie L.A. Takedown.
The Assassin (aka Point of No Return)
Perhaps sacrilege to remake Luc Besson’s La Femme Nikita, and another I think I’m alone in loving. I had a major crush on Bridget Fonda in this… but its a competent thriller with several decent performances, including a cameo by Harvey Keitel that’s worth seeing!
Breasts and naked skinny-dipping porn stars aside, this has gore by the bucket and a fast energetic pace that makes for one of the most fun horror movies in a long while. Director Alexandre Aja cements his reputation as the go to guy for horror remakes! (see also: The Hills Have Eyes).
Easy one this. Not seen the original but with a powerhouse performance by Al Pacino and that line ‘say hello to my little fiend’ this took a basic blue print and seriously went to town with it!
This shouldn’t have worked, but with a strong lead by the mouth-watering Mary Elizabeth Winstead and half decent and freaky CGI, as well as all the atmosphere the original had (ok this is technically a prequel…but it still counts…I think), this really surprised me.
I am starting to think that although they get the worst press, horror remakes have got it right a fair few times going by the list above. That’s just my opinion though and you may differ. So what would your choices be?