About the Blog

If you're familiar with horror movies, and you're familiar with Youtube, then it is likely that at some point you've come across my channel (thegebster). This blog in many ways is the continuation of that channel, in the sense that I will be posting lists, ideas, rumors, and concerns, as well as the content from the channel which you all seem to love.

I have started the blog because it allows for an important innovation. Through this blog we will be able to have a more unified discussion, as well as polls, arguments, and ideas. Hopefully this blog can give my subscribers a greater voice, and allow for an open forum for horror fanatics far and wide.


Monday, October 11, 2010

Horror Films and Hollywood's Remake Frenzy

     With the new horror remake Let Me In having been released a couple weeks ago, I felt it was time to discuss the ongoing trend of remaking old horror films. Remakes are nothing new, but lately studios have been showing a disturbing tendency to remake films that have only been out for a couple years. Let Me In for instance, is the American remake of the Swedish film Let the Right One In, which was released in 2008. Is it necessary to remake a film that has been out for such a short time? Are all remakes awful and unnecessary? Lets take a look...
     The last decade has seen  an unprecedented number of remakes, far more than most people even realize. This is because hollywood has picked up the habit of remaking relatively new movies from different countries. This trend seemed to emerge after the success of The Ring, based off the Japanese film Ringu, which was released 3 years earlier. The result was an endless stream of awful Asian horror remakes, Such as The Grudge, The Eye, Dark Water, Pulse, and One Missed Call. It seems that American studios have a phobia against subtitles, as many of the original versions of these films were excellent in their own right, and far surpassed their English counterparts. A prime example of this is [REC], an amazing Spanish horror film that was remade shot-for-shot only a year after its release into the mediocre Quarantine. Let Me In seems to be a similar case, being remade solely because the original was in a different language. I cannot rate the film myself because I haven't had the chance to see it, but I have heard some surprisingly good reviews.
     Examples like these make it seem as though no movie should ever be remade. Indeed, remakes have been getting an increasingly bad rap lately. However, we cannot forget that some of the greatest horror films ever made were remakes. My personal favorite horror movie, The Thing, is a remake of the 50's film The Thing From Another World. Cronenberg's The Fly and the 80's remake of The Blob were also exceptional films. Sometimes, a remake is a pretty good idea. This only applies, however, to films that are in serious need of an update. 50's movies are prime candidates, because even if the story was well written, the effects of the time were often laughable to the point of detracting from the film. What shouldn't  be remade are films that are perfectly fine on their own and have stood the test of time. An alarming number of classic horror films have been remade solely to cash in on the existing franchises. Platinum Dunes is the biggest offender, churning out sub-par "re-imaginings" of all the biggest horror classics, including Friday the 13th, The Amityville Horror, The Hitcher, A Nightmare on Elm Street, and The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (Although TCM was a decent remake in my opinion). We also cannot forget Rob Zombie's white trash abomination of  a reboot to the Halloween series. These films give their franchises a bad name, and bring down the genre as a whole.   
     So, are remakes the cancer of the film industry? Is the horror community's hatred of them justified? In my opinion, it is not. Yes, some damage has been done, but many remakes can bring more obscure movies back into the spotlight. For example, Piranha 3D wasn't an amazing movie by any means, but it was entertaining, and prompted new DVD releases of the the original cult classic, which has always been a favorite of mine. And, on occasion, a good film can be remade with a decent outcome. This usually only works if the remake is loosely based on the original, as was the case with Dawn of the Dead (2004). So although the remake craze has caused its fair share of problems, I think it has done at least enough good to make up for it.
     I know many people do not share my opinion, so now I leave it to my subscribers to discuss. What do you guys think?


  1. I actually agree with you for the most part. Some of the recent remakes I feel were unnecessary, unimaginative and watered down version of thier originals. But I felt some of them were enjoyable and non-damaging. I liked the Friday the 13th "reboot". Is it an exceptional remake of the original? No way. But is it fun as just another sequel? I think so. The F13 series was dead anyway. Whats the harm of a remake? I don't think it degrades the original film. Friday the 13th 1980 will always be a classic fun slasher (IMO) and even 5 sequels to the remake won't change that.

    I also agree with you that remaking recent foreign films is stupid. And alot of the remakes of other classic horror films didn't turn out for the best. Oh well, nice try i guess. For those who dispise the idea of remakes, don't see them and hold on to your DVDs of the originals. Those DVDs aren't going anywhere.

  2. For me, the remakes are driving me nuts. I only went to see the Friday the 13th remake because one of my favorite actors, Jared Padalecki, was in it and he was great, but I thought the movie sucked. It's probably because I'm not really into slasher flicks and I thought the original movie was okay. I recently watched the reboot of Nightmare and thought it was okay.
    I do agree though that The Ring, Dawn of the Dead, and Texas Chainsaw were really great remakes.
    Now, I hear they want to remake my favorite horror movie Poltergeist and that just really peeves me off. I wish they leave things alone and get some new ideas instead of going back to remake horror movies!

  3. There are a lot of terrible remakes. America's not even the only one to borrow from other countrys. I'm pretty sure the movie Frontiers is a french interpretation of the texas chainsaw massacre. And I just wanted to mention the Fog because its one of the worst remakes of all time. The Invasion of the Body Snatchers ended up with good reimaginings atleast. And speaking of The Thing, I hear its about to get a self-titled prequel soon.

  4. It's a difficult one. Yes, there are some terrible remakes out there, The Fog being my number one, but if Mr Carpenter hadn't remade / re-imagined The Thing From Another World, the brilliant The Thing wouldn't have existed, and damn, I love that movie!
    Some films just don't need remaking. Period. Let The Right One In being one of them. I watched this recently and I loved it. It was subtle, freaky and had a great ending. Maybe re-making it with English speaking actors will open up the original film to a wider audience, but who actually gives a rats-ass apart from the studio execs? I think most of the enjoyment from such foreign horror films like The Host (watch this!) and Let The Right One In, is from the fact that the actors aren't speaking English but in their native tongue. Kinds of adds a feeling of realism and the unknown don't you think? Or maybe that's just me?

  5. First of all, I'm so glad to see you back ^_^ About what you are saying, I completely agree with you, and the fact you've posted this makes me feel good since this is something my friends and I always talk when a new remake of an already good film has been made or is going to be made.
    I agree with you guys, I don't know what's going on in the heads of those who are excited about adapting horror films. The result is always the same...

    This reminds me of the remake producers have planned with Alfred Hitchcok's "The Birds"...(pause)... Saving Naomi Watts would play Tippi Hedren's role, the worse part of this idea is that in this remake, they want to give a scientific explanation to why those birds attack. So, really? Come on, that's what makes the film so misterious, the fact that we don't really know why the birds act like that. We don't need any reason. That would kill the film, definitely.

    And what about Rosemary's Baby's remake? I've read some of the actors that could play Mia Farrow's role (I insist this one is just rumoured, but The Birds' remake is confirmed, and will be done for 2011), like Jessica Alba in that role, and Michael Bay as the producer or director of this.

    What do you think of this? Sure we'll end seeing both films, both due to curiosity and also because we want somehow to compare them. But I don't know, some classics are what they are because the keep an uncanny secret in them.

  6. Looking forward to new posts from you. Been checking this site for a couple of weeks now. :(

  7. No damage has been done. Look. Let's not pretend Friday the 13th, Amityville Horror and, to a more argumentative extent, Nightmare on Elm Street are these sacred relics of filmmaking. (Nightmare could be considered, but the fact it had 5 sub-par sequels ANNUALLY and enough merchandise to fill a small high-rise, I find it moot)

    Yeah, sometimes remakes are shitty. And yeah some don't need to be made (TCM works so well BECAUSE it's so dirty and cheap) But really, this is just one of those things you have got to get over to continue in the genre. It sucks when they make money from a cash-in product based on something you love, but does it really diminish your love for it in the first place? I think not and I think that is what's most important.

    Give every one a chance, though. You'll never know which ones will surprise you. And at the very least it will educate you on what exactly you didn't care for.

    Remakes, cash-ins, and pointless sequels have been with us since the Universal monster heyday. It's not going anywhere, it just goes by a different face now.

  8. Wanted to thank you for sharing such an eclectic set of scenes on youtube. I've been going through most of them chronologically, but hope to see examples from earlier eras (Psycho or the Birds from just one master?) Not sure about the Blob, but the Fly was an outstanding remake.

  9. Firstly, love the blog. Secondly, as a horror writer let me throw this into the melting pot ... My main concern with the remake frenzy is that it may slow down the uptake of new and fresh horror scripts into the studios. We don't need another Saw or another whatever ... we need new franchises to build – new monsters, not heated up left overs!

  10. I guess i don't so much mind about remaking of the old horror movies but I am really pissed everytime they tried to remake of the foreign movies like The Ring...they totally ruined it..they don't understand the ideology behind it

  11. you're right, they don't make horror movies like that anymore. they just remake bullshit horror movies, for me i think 80's till 90's was the best horror movies of all time.

  12. well remakes I think can be ok as long as they are done in the same spirit as the original.

    I just saw I spit on your grave the remake. It simply did not capture the raw horror of rape like the first film did. Hello? The whole idea of I spit on your grave was to get revenge for a very nasty brutal rape.

    Now there are lots of really great films that should be remade and with a bit of a bigger budget could be a real hit.

    I would love to see a remake of the jap classic Machine girl or even audition would be nice to see remade. Again though the remakes need to really capture the essence of the originals ( which might be hard to do with a classic like audition)

  13. I don't think the remakes are all that good either.Yes,there are some exceptions but there should not be a remake of a good horror movie that has been out for a couple of years.I think they should lay off all the remakes but a good remake could come around every once in a while.

  14. I liked your blog
    Sorry by my bad English jejeje
    but I think that the remake are bad because they don´t show the original story of a movie and the new film (sometimes) show other kind of stories but I can´t do anithing

  15. (anything, sorry a correction)

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  17. Trollu, we didn't need terrible remakes of classics like Halloween, The Amityville Horror, The Shining, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre or Psycho. All of the afforementioned are definitley classics, as they have spawned countless sequels and imitations. Plus, it is simply ridiculous to remake something that cannot be bettered. Mind you, the movie companies do not need to worry anbout pissing off horror fans. They're getting all this free publicity off of the original names and saving themselves million$ in advertising costs, which is {sarcasm} as that matters.

  18. On the balance sheet, bad remakes outnumber the good. The millennium trilogy remakes are far too early and unnecessary as well(Noomi Rapace is fabulous). But the economy is going into the toilet and Hollywood needs a sure thing. I now need netflix to see anything original.
    Btw, I post very good horror fiction on my blog: www.Iwritehorror.blogspot.com
    The stories are free, if you or anyone would like to check them out.

  19. u have class collection of horror ! do tell what r ur top ten

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