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Wet Noodle Posse | Blog

Monday, January 01, 2007

Remakes

Today's the day when people around the globe are on Day 1 of remaking themselves and their lives based on their New Year's Resolutions. There's a powerful allure to remaking things, including ourselves. I can't be the only one who remade myself when I went off to college, then again when I decided to be a novelist.

But New Year's resolutions aren't alone in the remaking department. Think of all the songs that are re-recorded by different artists. Some are good, like the remake of "Lady Marmalade" (original by Patti LaBelle) by Christina Aguilera, Mya, Pink and Lil Kim. Others are truly craptacular, like Britney Spears' "I Love Rock 'n' Roll" (original by Joan Jett -- I'm sorry but you don't mess with this song!) and "California Girls" by David Lee Roth (original by the Beach Boys).

Movies and TV programs are remade too. Sometimes one format is made into the other. For instance, Buffy the Vampire Slayer started out as a movie -- a really bad one. But it turned into a fantastic TV show. Some TV favorites, The X-Files and Firefly, translated well to the big screen (Firefly as Serenity). It being the beginning of a new year, it seems only appropriate that I watched a remake tonight -- the movie version of Miami Vice.

I, like any good kid of the '80s, was a big fan of the weekly TV escapades of Miami Vice detectives Sonny Crockett (Don Johnson) and Rico Tubbs (Philip Michael Thomas).






















I'm sure if I watched it now, though, I'd find some '80s cheese factor. Based on what I can remember from lo those many years ago, the movie version, with Colin Farrell as Crockett and Jamie Foxx as Tubbs, is much edgier.















It still has that feel of the decadent, hot, steamy, and dangerous life in Miami's fast lane. There are still snazzy suits, fast cars, girls and nightclubs, but this new Crockett and Tubbs are bad dudes (in a good way). I'm not saying the movie's perfect. It's not. The story line confused me in parts and I thought the romantic relationship for Sonny developed too easily, but overall it was a fun couple of hours. And they even remade the classic Miami Vice song "In the Air Tonight" (original by Phil Collins; remake by a band called Nonpoint that I've never heard of).

So what's your take on remakes? Should they be avoided? Do you have favorites? Ones you think really stink out loud?

Oh, and Happy 2007 from the Wet Noodle Posse.

7 Comments:

At 7:38 AM, Blogger MaryF said...

Interesting, because Fred and I were having this discussion yesterday watching Battlestar Galactica (the new one.) I watched the old one religiously, and so resisted the new one. My stepdad clean refuses to watch the new one. But the new one has so many more nuances than the old one, is more realistic (if a Sci Fi show can be that) in the decisions the leaders have to make, in the steps they have to take for survival.

There are some remakes I like, though for the life of me, I can't think of one right now.

 
At 2:57 PM, Blogger Trish Milburn said...

I totally agree about Battlestar Galactica. Can't believe I forgot to mention that. I think guys can't get past the hangup about Starbuck being a girl now. I mean, why does it matter? She still kicks butt. :)

 
At 11:40 AM, Blogger bridget said...

Interesting subject, Trish!

I guess my feeling on remakes is, "If it aint broke, don't fix it." Why would anyone remake "Sabrina", which was practically a perfect movie, (the original starred Humphrey Bogart and Audrey Hepburn)? I don't know, but they did, and it was awful.

OTOH, remakes of things that weren't done right the first time seem like a good idea to me. Gar. Don't hate me, okay? But I think someone should re-make Harry Potter 1 & 2 someday...

 
At 12:46 PM, Blogger Marianne Arkins said...

I disagree wholeheartedly about "Battlestar Galactica"... I wanted to like it and I tried and tried to watch it and HATED IT. Every last minute of it.

Of course, I hated "Lost", too. And "Desperate Housewives" and any number of successful shows, so I'm clearly in the minority.

I watch the original "Miracle on 34th Street" at Christmas (and HATE the remakes), and far prefer the black and white version of "It's a Wonderful Life", so maybe I'm just a creature of habit.

In fact, you've made me hurt my brain thinking if there's ever been a remake I've liked, and I can't think of even one. Huh.

 
At 7:40 PM, Blogger MaryF said...

LOL, Marianne. You're just ahead of the popular opinion curve ;) I admit, BSG is an acquired taste. But it's so complex, really well done!

 
At 8:02 PM, Blogger Diane Perkins said...

Marianne,
How about Phantom of the Opera?? That's a good remake!
It was a legend, then a book, then a silent movie, a talkie, a play, and then that wonderful movie!

Diane

 
At 4:31 AM, Blogger Marianne Arkins said...

Actually, I thought about "Phantom", but the book and original silent movie were both so different from the musical, that I wasn't sure it could be considered a remake.

If so, then YES ... that remake was superb. Saw it on stage in San Francisco and Denver (wish I'd managed NYC!) and think the movie was wonderful (though I wasn't in love with their choice of Raoul).

 

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