Have we hit the bottom of the barrel in the movie industry? I’m just wondering that. I know that there’s a plethora of movies based on books such as Harry Potter, The Hunger Games and even such properties as Iron Man, Captain America and the Avengers, and even re-imaginings of such classic tales as Snow White, Jack and the Bean Stock that are coming out. But mixed among all of that is the slough of remakes being announced. Such as Chucky.
Remember Chucky? The demonic toy that carried the soul of executed mass murderer and then went on a rampage of killing in his new form as a doll. Well, that one’s being made.
The question to ask is why? Why make (or remake, as the case may be) a film that, when viewed again in its original format, was pretty horrible. I don’t mean horrible in the fact it was a masterpiece of horror, I mean it was horrible in the same way that a pile of garbage dumped on your front lawn is horrible. Yet, for some reason we tend to cling to these film pieces like they were an important part of history. History they are a part of, and maybe it’s that part of history that examines what kind of a culture we were back then. But they don’t need to be dragged back to life as though Dr. Frankenstein was building another monster.
But why do we feel this need to remake films like Chucky, when there’s a number of properties out there that could stand the treatment of the silver screen.
Like, for example, Wonder Woman. Her story isn’t that hard, but for some reason, producers and executives don’t know how to tell it. It’s not hard, in reality. It’s like 300, but with women (and a better story, to be honest). Wonder Woman is the story of myth and legend, reaching back to the tales of the ancient Greeks. How hard is it to find that cool? How difficult is it to create that movie? Instead, we are treated to attempts at modernizing the story, placing Diana in the modern age, either as a military personnel or the CEO of a major company.
I truly believe that the potential of a lot of really good stories is being wasted thanks to movie companies attempting to thrust tired and old story ideas, plot lines and characters upon a viewing public.
But of course, many of the really good and original ideas that are springing up now are actually quite difficult for movie companies to figure out. Because the main characters are women for the most part. Movie companies don’t know how to treat women as the main protagonist. It’s no different than the fight that was had to bring Red Tails to the big screen. It was an all black movie, with no white saviour in sight at all. “How can we tell this story” some producers might ask. I don’t know, but what I do know is you’re not even trying.
The same goes for women. Hell, I’d love to see Black Mask and Pale Rider as a feature film, but Hollywood would go insane, because not only is there one female protagonist, there’s two lead female roles. That might give them a brain hemorrhage. Could I have written the story with two male leads? Sure, but it would have been the same as every other wester, every other fantasy, and every other bromance movie that’s been done. There would be nothing new about it. With women as the lead characters, you suddenly have something different, something new, new places to go and new places to explore.
But the viewing public, it seems, fueled by Hollywood, wants to take zero risk with their entertainment. They want things that are familiar, things that take no risks, offer nothing new.
Just the same old, same old.
Have we hit rock bottom?