A remake that improves on the film it’s copying is as rare as a sequel that’s better than the film it’s following (though admittedly it happens, as do solar eclipses and celebrity guilty verdicts).
I’m always horrified when a classic gets redone simply because they assume magic will strike twice, when in reality it’s bad films that need to be done over!
And so, the history of ill-advised remakes is littered with broken dreams and cinematic corpses, but I have to say my least favorite one of all is:
Psycho, the Gus Van Sant version which redid the Hitchcock original frame by frame, but made it really bad!
And yours? Is it The Haunting? House on Haunted Hill? Halloween? Or maybe Barb Wire? (Yes, that was a remake–it was Pamela Lee‘s fucked up reworking of Casablanca, and you must believe me on that! It was astoundingly brilliant, mind you, but not quite up to the level of Casablanca)
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on September 14, 2009