The Worst Movie Remakes Of All Time
10 February 2020, 06:00 | Updated: 10 February 2020, 06:01
Sometimes you shouldn’t mess with a classic: from Godzilla to The Wicker Man, here’s when the film-makers don’t necessarily improve on genius.
Paul Verhoeven’s 1987 movie is a dystopian sci-fi comedy action classic, but the remake lacks the sly wit of the orginal and the title character looks more like a fancy dress Iron Man than Peter Weller’s iconic cybernetic lawmaker.
The Wicker Man (2006)
Robin Hardy’s 1973 cult thriller is one of the creepiest, strangest and entertaining British horror films of all time. The 2006 remake swaps rural Scotland for Washington State, bee worshippers for your common pagans and Edward Woodward’s uptight policeman for American cop Nicolas Cage. It’s an abomination. In fact, it's un-bee-lievable.
The Italian Job (2003)
If you enjoyed Michael Caine in the original Swinging 60s, Mini Cooper-filled classic, you won’t enjoy this slick Hollywood remake starring Mark Wahlberg and Charlize Theron. It throws out most of the plot of the original, including the 1969 version’s literal cliff-hanger ending. Boo!
Lots of whingeing blokes felt betrayed and “threatened” by the recasting of the titular paranormal investigators being recast with female actors, but that’s not the issue for us at all, in fact it's an ace idea. The problem is that the reboot is not a tenth as witty or as anarchic as the original and is forever in the shadow of its predecessor - even Mr Stay Puft only shows up as a balloon, for heaven's sake. Let's hope the all-female remake of The Blues Brothers fares better, eh?
Get Carter (2000)
This remake switches Michael Caine in 1971 Newcastle for Sylvester Stallone in Seattle in 2000. Why? Sly is a great action hero, but he fails to reflect the steely determination of Caine and aims for his usual action thriller mode. Old Michael actually turns up in a cameo, just to rub it in.
Planet Of The Apes (2001)
If you’ve seen the 1968 original (or even the musical version on The Simpsons), there are no new twists in the remake, which tries to one-up the killer ending by making it even sillier. But like most modern remakes, extravagant effects overwhelm the film and even Tim Burton's individual styles doesn't come across. The make-up isn't a patch on the original, either.
King Kong (1976)
Not the Peter Jackson version, which was OK (if a bit long), but the bloated 70s version that swapped out the animated character of the 1933 original film for a bloke in a suit and a giant “robot Kong” that didn’t even work. There aren’t even freakin’ dinosaurs in it. There was a giant snake, but everyone knows that dinosaurs make a movie 1,000% better, don't they? And the epic finale, where Kong climbs the World Trade Center, now just seems terribly sad.
Director Gus Van Sant decided to remake the 1960 Alfred Hitchcock classic shot-for-shot. Why? Yes, it’s slightly more graphic with red blood and real nudity, but the original was such a model of restraint, you’re left wondering: what’s the point? There's a reason why the original is a classic, and that's because it's ACE.
Matthew Broderick was the lead in this staggeringly misguided “update” of the classic Japanese monster movie franchise. The lead creature is really weird looking (he has a bigger chin than Sir Bruce Forsyth) and there are loads of little Godzillas that add nothing to the mayhem. And Cloverfield came along and did it better anyway. To be honest the best thing about it was Jamiroquai’s soundtrack contribution, Deeper Underground, which is a BANGER.
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2014)
The 1990 original struggled to replicate the characters of the comic strip, but they were infinitely preferable to the CGI monstrosities of this remake that came and went with very little fuss. Even the cartoon was better than this.