Top 10 Unnecessary Remakes

MSN Movies has a list of Top 10 Unnecessary Remakes (because the oldies are just fine, thank you). Ah yes. This is a game that classic movies fans will always enjoy - sniffing at the newer guys because we can. To be frank, I had not heard of a good deal of these remakes, so I couldn't agree or disagree with the reasoning they give for dismissing some of them.

Yet, they hit the nail on the head about the remake of Sabrina (1954) - it lacks charm. But I give it some slack because it does try. They are fine actors, but Harrison Ford is simply not Humphrey Bogart, and Julie Ormond is not Audrey Hepburn; the newer folks are going to come up short, so what can you do?

However, I'm going to give the new Three Musketeers (2011) a chance. The 1993 Disney remake does an excellent job of capturing the vitality of the swordsmen, the urgency of the mission to save the king and the vigor of our youthful protagonist. So I'm not hiding in terror at the mere thought of yet another company doing over Alexandre Dumas' story. Besides, even though I'm delighted by Gene Kelly's acrobatics in the 1948 version, he is a tad overripe to be a naive country boy desperate to join an elite corps of the king's bodyguards; I was happy to see a younger guy play the part for once.

"Overripe, eh? Engarde!"

Usually remakes are annoying, but something happens when there are dozens of remakes of the same legendary story. Audiences begin to embrace most of them as a set and eagerly anticipate their arrival. (Then rip them to shreds in their reviews.)

Take a gander at MSN's Top 10 Unnecessary Remakes. Did they miss any?


  1. I love this, I'm so glad MSN did it. I haven't seen overly many of these either but agree with the one's I've seen.
    For 'Psycho' Anne Heche and Julianne Moore aren't as sexy to me as Vera Miles and Janet Leigh.
    And don't even get me started on the new "Women"....

  2. Java, for me, only two remakes of classic movies are as good as the originals:

    1.) The 2001 remake of OCEAN'S ELEVEN (and its sequels, especially the third one), because frankly, I've always felt that the 2001 version is actually better than The Rat Pack's 1960 original. There, I said it, and I'm not sorry! :-) Seriously, Java, the original with Sinatra and Company has always struck me as an overlong home movie, and I wasn't crazy about the way they treated every woman like a cheap hooker except Angie Dickinson.

    2.) John Carpenter's version of THE THING -- as opposed to the 1951 Hawks/Nyby version of John Campbell's story WHO GOES THERE? I actually love both movie versions (indeed, I discussed it on TALES OF THE EASILY DISTRACTED during Nate Hood's 1950s Monster Mash Blogathon). Each one has its own viewpoint and its own strengths. If you like your THING with more wit and camaraderie, go for the 1961 version. If you like your THING darker and bleaker, with more violence and jaw-dropping F/X, go for Carpenter's 1982 version. There's someTHING for everyone! :-)

    Nice post, Java, and I love your bit of animation with Gene Kelly, too!

  3. Jessica, I'd heard that the new WOMEN was a stinker. The trailer was horrible, so I didn't even bother.

    Dorian! I thought I was the only one who enjoyed the newer Ocean's Eleven over the original! I tire of the frat boy mentality of the Rat Pack films, in spite of the amazing talent.

    Individually, though, these performers are great. My favorite Dean MArtin film is Bells Are Ringing; Judy Holliday makes you like everybody. I wonder if there was ever a remake of that film...

    Thanks, everyone.

    -- Java


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