We live in a movie climate predicated on the all-holy remake. Hollywood loves it because it gives studios a built-in audience to make money off, and people love it because they get to see movies they adored as kids receive all the benefits of modern filmmaking. But more often than not, things don’t turn out quite the way anyone hoped, inevitably leading to almost universal disappointment for all involved. And while there have been definite success stories (see: True Grit and 21 Jump Street), a remake is often asking for trouble for a whole host of reasons.
Sometimes it’s a reboot of a classic that could never measure up to the original. Other times, it’s a misguided attempt to try and mine something good out of an objectively bad movie. Whatever the reason, it’s clear that going the route of the remake isn’t always the best idea.
1. Dredd (2012)
- Remake of: Judge Dredd (1995)
Scoring a paltry 18% on Rotten Tomatoes, 1995’s Judge Dredd starring Sylvester Stallone was far from the ideal movie to bring back to life. But that didn’t stop Hollywood from remaking it anyway, for a film that the A.V. Club called a “nearly humorless bit of ultraviolence distinguished largely by a fondness for spurting CGI blood.” Dredd was a disappointment in every sense of the term, but not one that surprised anyone given the movie it was spawned from. There have been murmurings of a Dredd 2, but if we’re being completely honest, this one would be better off laid to rest.
2. Robocop (2014)
- Remake of: Robocop (1987)
1987’s Robocop was a violent cult classic, producing a body count that, for its time, was considered astronomical. Modern cinema has since dwarfed that, but in the late ’80s, a movie that shamelessly piled on the blood and gore was far from the norm. Its 2014 remake unfortunately failed to capture any of that splendor, shown to a generation of moviegoers who are getting harder and harder to impress. Without that necessary shock factor, the film failed to resonate with viewers, netting a 49% Rotten Tomatoes score. Sometimes it’s better to let sleeping franchises lie.
3. Footloose (2011)
- Remake of: Footloose (1984)
The original Footloose was the movie that vaulted Kevin Bacon into ’80s stardom. It was fun, light-hearted, and wholly appropriate for its era. The 2011 reboot, though, felt oddly out of place as a movie that no longer felt like it applied to its audience. While its reviews largely seemed to reside on the positive end, the one word that came up most was “unnecessary.” And that’s just what this particular version felt like. A newer version offered nothing more than a rehash of a film that simply didn’t require an update in any way, shape, or form.
4. Planet of the Apes (2001)
- Remake of: Planet of the Apes (1954)
1954’s Planet of the Apes is widely regarded as one of the greatest sci-fi movies ever made. This makes any attempt at a remake a fool’s errand, especially when your efforts will be constantly measured up to those of a classic film. Why a studio saw fit to tag Tim Burton to direct its remake is far beyond us. His version possessed none of the charm of the original, and certainly little of the shock value. Cinema Crazed even went so far as to call it “one of the most nonsensical series of events ever created on film,” making for a movie that failed astronomically on every level.
5. The Pink Panther (2006)
- Remake of: The Pink Panther (1963)
It’s always tough to top a movie that slid by on the charm of the era it was made in. That very same charm didn’t carry over to the mid-’00s, ending with a 22% Rotten Tomatoes score and a host of disappointed fans. Somehow this was parlayed into a sequel that was equally as unasked-for as the remake. It’s safe to say that moving forward, there’s little we need less than more Pink Panther movies to taint our memories of the 1963 comedy classic.
6. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (2005)
- Remake of: Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory (1971)
Back in 1971, Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory hit theaters to the delight of hundreds of thousands of sugar-crazed children. As a movie based off Roald Dahl’s dark kids’ novel, it was always going to have some more cynical themes. But the original movie practically reveled in them, making for a movie that both parents and their children could enjoy. Here we have yet another Tim Burton reboot failing to do justice to the original, taking a delightfully creepy source material and making it unnecessarily creepier with Johnny Depp.
Check out Entertainment Cheat Sheet on Facebook!