Saturday, January 20, 2007

Worst movie weekend ever?

I realize it's only the third week or so of the new year, but I'm still ready to predict this will be the worst movie weekend of 2007, if not the worst of all time.

One new movie in wide-release world, and it's a remake of "The Hitcher"? Sheesh. I mean, as a teenager I enjoyed watching the original. If nothing else, the vision of poor Jennifer Jason Leigh stretched between two trucks on some modern version of the rack will linger with you for a long time.

But why in the world would you make it again? And, much more importantly, why does Hollywood keep catering almost exclusively to the teenagers who have already given up on going to the movies?

The story behind this hideous project is even scarier than some of you may know. The team that made this remake is also responsible for not one but two recent rehashings of "The Texas Chainsaw Massacre," and will soon be turning to something much more dangerous.

I guess you have to admire their nerve, but anyone who would think they can do a remake of "The Birds" should just be removed from this planet immediately. That's exactly what these clowns have in their sights next, so if anyone would be willing to rub them out before this gets finished, I'll gladly stake you.

OK, maybe that was a bit much, but I'm just pissed off this morning as I look at the movie listings. What in the world do we have to do to get Pan's Labyrinth in my little corner of the world? I'm up for just about anything legal.

Oh well. At least Dame Mirren's big Golden Globes win means The Queen gets its first run here in Macon. I think I'll just go see that again, so maybe it won't be such a bad weekend after all, no thanks to Hollywood.

30 comments:

a rose is a rose said...

if you've never seen georgia with jennifer jason leigh (and mare winningham), i highly recommend it

Reel Fanatic said...

Thanks for the recommendation, Rose .. I have seen that one, and I liked it quite a bit .. They're both great in it

Ian said...

Sounds like bad timing. Here in the UK I'm spoilt for choice (off to see a preview of Venus starring Peter O'Toole and Leslie Phillips tomorrow). Check this link to see what gems we have being released on this side of the Pond this week: http://www.futuremovies.co.uk/cinema.asp

I'm intrigued by your constant championing of The Queen. Admittedly I haven't seen it yet (waiting for the DVD) but the critics whose opinions I most admire over here have consistently made the same point - that it's a fantastic TV drama (it was originally made for TV) but NOT great cinema and having never been intended for the cinema isn't really worthy of the title "film". I guess I have to see it for myself but having seen "Pierrepoint" at which the same criticisms were levelled, I have a feeling I'll be agreeing with those critics.

Sachin G. said...

Pan's Labyrinth and The Last King of Scotland have finally opened in my city this weekend so I can finally get a chance to see them. But it is frustrating waiting months and months for some of these films while most publications across North America tout these movies among the best of the year.

I am not thrilled by this mad rush of releases slated for November-December for award purposes. In order to qualify for a nomination, the producers open the movie in an isolated theatre whereas it takes months for these films to get wider release. The only good movies one sees from Jan thru March are the award nominated movies opening from the previous year. I just wish we had a steady flow of decent releases throughout the year as opposed to the current obvious release targets -- summer popcorn flicks and fall/winter award season contenders.

But on a positive note, I will try to catch Children of Men this week as well :)

Reel Fanatic said...

It does indeed have the feel of a TV drama, Ian, but there are two things that lift it above that level .. Helen Mirren needs no further mention, but the other thing it definitely has going for it is an extremely witty script ... I know that you Brits have the luxury of regularly getting TV fare of a higher quality than we do here, but I just don't get dialogue of the quality penned by Peter Morgan

Anonymous said...

I see the ad for this above the urinal at the bar I go to. I laugh, I cry, I wretch.

Anonymous said...

Good post. I completely agree with you.

Nobody should ever mess with a Hitchcock movie (or a Kubrick, Scorsese, Allen, etc.).

Pan's Labrynth just opened here. I'm going to try and catch it this weekend.

Chris said...

To add insult to injury, people watching the original The Birds can be seen in The Hitcher remake. One more reason to hate Michael Bay...I didn't think it possible!

Linda said...

I feel your pain. It takes forever for limited release films to come to RI too. This time of year, I travel to Boston, New York and Connecticut to see the limited release stuff. Just back from Boston to see Miss Potter and Little Children. Both well worth the trip!! Lucky to have that market nearby. I love Sean Bean, but it would take more than that to get me to see The Hitcher. Good luck, and (hope you don't mind) GO PATS!!

Reel Fanatic said...

I love the novelist Tom Perotta, Linda, so I really want to see Little Children, but it hasn't reached my little corner of the world either ... I guess Tuesday's nominations could change all that!

FrancesDanger said...

I feel your pain. We get 3 screens of The Hitcher, yet Pan's Labrynth has a hard time even being booked. I will say that things are getting better here in Oklahoma, what with the art museum opening some independents. It still takes forever for movies to get here, though.

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Anonymous said...

Saw Children of Men today and enjoyed it thoroughly. Had no idea that I would be so entertained by such a bleak premise. Pan's Labyrinth tomorrow and possibly Perfume this week. I need to catch up on my reviews...

Reel Fanatic said...

It's been a tough competition with some great movies at the end of 2006, but Cuaron's movie has risen to the top of the list in my mind ... It it indeed bleak, but the ending is just perfect, and that set piece during the gun battle in the burned-out apartment building is a stunner

Anonymous said...

It's very depressing. I think Hollywood has hit an all-time low. I had heard about the Birds re-make and had hoped it wasn't true.

It seems it is. I've hated Michael Bay for quite some time, but this tears it.

Reel Fanatic said...

The first two or three times I heard it I didn't believe it either, Piper .. remaking 70s and 80s horror flicks is already a bad idea, but anyone who meddles with Hitchcock is just a bastard

Anonymous said...

I didn't see the original Hitcher and doubt I'll see this one. Tell me, does Sean Bean die a magnificent death as he often does in his flicks?
;-)

Reel Fanatic said...

I won't be finding out, blueberry, but if memory serves me right Rutger Hauer does meet a rather gory demise in the original ... Since you haven't seen it yet, I don't recommend it very highly ... Despite the presence of Jennifer Jason Leigh and C. Thomas Howell, it's just a pretty standard slasher flick

Anonymous said...

I saw also that they're remaking Motel Hell. Why in the world would you remake a classic? It can only suck.

When will Hollywood realize the futility of remaking old low-budget classics? Even when you're remaking your own movie-- Robert Rodriguez' "El Mariachi" was so superior to his big-budget remake, Desperado.

Reel Fanatic said...

You're definitely right there, Johnny ... Desperado still had some charms, but it truly was pointless ... I hadn't heard about Motel Hell ... Apparently the madness will never end!

Anonymous said...

I havent watch the original The Hitcher yet but i'm more amused with the remake of The Phanthom of the Opera. I'm currently waiting for The Queen to hit the local cinema screens. That movie has won a few awards and Helen Mirren walks away with two during the recent Golden Globe Awards. it can't go wrong.. Any reviews on the Last King of Scotland?

Reel Fanatic said...

I posted a review of The Last King of Scotland just after Thanksgiving, Wangs, when I managed to see it in New York .. I liked it quite a bit, and think Forest Whitaker will be a deserving winner on Oscar night .. Overall the movie was as terrifying as anything that's passed off as horror nowadays, and a heck of a lot smarter

Anonymous said...

Thanks for stopping by my site. I've read a few of your posts and have to say I love your writing style. I can also agree with almost everything I've read on your blog. Also, why don't they try remaking movies that need to be remade. You know, because the original was flawed in some way. I don't know how many times I've seen a movie and said "if they just did this it would have been a lot better".

Reel Fanatic said...

There are certainly remakes that don't turn my stomach, Rube, but they are few and far between .. One example on the horizon is that the Hughes brothers are making their comeback with their own take on TV's Kung Fu ... now that should just be fun

Anonymous said...

I totally understand how you feel about the remakes. I can't stand remakes. I'll admit that every once in a while there's one that compels me a little more to watch it like the remake of The Amityville Horror. The new one showed more scenes from the book than the original did.

The way I see it. If they are so dead set on doing remakes then take a B movie and turn it into a blockbuster.

Jeff said...

If anything, because of the cast at least The Hitcher doesn't look like every other stupid horror movie-of-the-week that we've been subjected to for two years straight.

And no Stomp the Yard love? Shocked! Appalled!

Reel Fanatic said...

You're probably right that I should have given Stomp the Yard a chance, Jeff, but I just can't stand dancing flicks .. Musicals I love, but dance movies just leave me cold

Marina said...

It is a saddly quiet week as far as new releases is concerned so I stepped out to see something I missed over the holidays, "The Good Shepherd". I think things will pick up a bit more next week but it doesn't look too promising...

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