I spit on your horror movie remake
Maggie Grace in 'The Fog.' MSNBC contributor Dave White has a good column on being a movie review who loves horror yet having to sit through the recent dregs of the genre. He really nails my own thoughts on this year's releases and I'm not too optimistic about the near future either. Anyone who's read this blog knows I'm not an elitist. I'm not necessarily opposed to a movie just because it's a remake or a sequel. I'm as happy with Friday the 13th II as with Friday the 13th or with the remake of, OK, I can't think of any remakes I liked better. But I'm sure there's been one at some point or other. I just hate badly done remakes and sequels.
When the shoddy, pointless, not-scary remake of John Carpenter’s 1980 horror film “The Fog” opened recently, I made sure my Friday morning schedule was clear so I could catch the first matinee screening. I had to; I review movies for a living and “The Fog” wasn’t made available to critics beforehand. Not that I blame Columbia Pictures for that. They had to know they had a limp one on their hands and critics are usually irrationally unkind to the horror genre anyway.I skipped The Fog. I confess even after I put up a Fog warning last week, I nearly caved in this week because I'm like a horror movie junkie badly in need of a fix and like a truly desperate junkie willing to down embalming fluid I almost went in to see The Fog. Admittedly I never would have posted about it here. I'd have been too ashamed. I've got some good movies lined up in my Netflix queue. But I also just noticed they're all about 20 or 30 years old. Why does Hollywood torture us horror fans like this?
Here’s one terrible thing you can count on: cheap remakes of old horror films are here to stay because they don’t cost much to make and even if they fail at the domestic box office they clean up in “ancillary” sales like DVD and cable. They can flat-out suck it — and with the exception of last year’s “Dawn of The Dead” they’ve all done just that — and horror audiences are easily lured into theaters to see them.That's right. Blame the victim. OK, in this case we should blame the victims, the movie goers who shell out for these wretched excuses for horror movies. I'm not asking for much. Just a few original thrills. Some gore. Characters that make sense. A story that remains true to its world's rules (Is a bit of consistency too much to ask, Darkness Falls?) Anyway, I agree with White's column. And he has a blog on Live Journal that I'll probably add to my sidebar in a night or two. That is, if Horror Express hasn't arrived in the mail. Otherwise, I'll be busy watching a really good horror movie.