BOOS! & WHOOP-DOOS!: Why Is Pegasus Black? and Other Remake Mysteries!

B. Alan looks at a decade of horrible cinematic remakes and rehashes that ruined film as an art form.
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BOOS! & WHOOP-DOOS!: Why Is Pegasus Black? and Other Remake Mysteries!

Remake Mysteries!

B. Alan looks at a decade of horrible cinematic remakes and rehashes that ruined film as an art form.

Black Pegasus? Boo!

Why is Pegasus black? Why did this flying horse need to be recast El Negro? It makes about as much sense as casting Cedric the Entertainer in the role of Ralph Kramden. There is no reasoning being placed behind it, other than, "We can do what we want! We can do what we feel!" It's strange that in both Clash of the Titans and 2005's The Honeymooners, the only hint of imagination or originality came from swapping ethnicities. In neither case does it pertain to, or help push along the story. It's senseless esthetic scrambling. Sure, poor black folks probably work in the sewer and beat their spouses, too. So why not update an old 1940s sitcom to reflect how far we've come? But Pegasus? Come on! Nowhere in the mythology of that first film does it ever state this creature was the color of charcoal. It just looks wrong. Smells wrong. Seems wrong on all levels. I like my Pegasus white. But that's just one of the many problems Louis Leterrier conjures up with his 3D retelling of this 1981 Greek God fairytale.

When asked about the dubious color switcheroo on set last year, Leterrier simply replied, "I didn't want to do it the same, but different." As I suspected, Pegasus is black for no real reason at all. Louis wanted to make the movie "different". The storyline is already pretty good. The film is remembered as a quasi-classic in the stop-motion genre. He didn't want to mess with the script too much. Instead, he rearranged the palate. A coloring book is a coloring book no matter how far you scribble outside the lines. Desmond Davis' original incarnation of this story wasn't perfect, and it was widely panned by critics and audiences alike when it first hit theater screens nearly thirty years ago. You haven't heard an outcry from the fans about the blasphemous process of regurgitating this property. One: Because audiences who used to hate remakes have become subservient to them in this day and age. And Two: Because the film really could have used a proper upgrade to its advantage.

The problem? Puke never makes for a satisfying meal. Unless you're a dog eating grass. Louis failed to reiterate a watchable do-over. Instead, he hastily flung together one of the most excruciating stretches of celluloid seen in the last ten years. It's a painful experience to begin with. Throw in some horribly rendered 3D conversion effects, three crying babies, and a bunch of dumb-as-sticks audience members who refuse to shut up, and you've got a clear-cut recipe for disaster. This painful mess is not worth the newly jacked-up ticket price. Heck, this stinker isn't worth a dollar Redbox rental. And that hurts. Clash of the Titans caps a decade of truly atrocious remakes. Unnecessary bi-products of a consumer age mentality. The 3D is just an after thought, tacked-on to up its revenue. That, my film-loving friends, is called a hornswoggle. If you haven't already, save your money and avoid Louis Leterrier's Clash of the Titans at all costs.

Desmond Davis' Clash of the Titans may strike a lot of off notes throughout the course of its two hour run time. Despite its shortcomings, its still a charming, fun experience to sit through. Its what a movie of its kind should be. And it has aged well, all things considered. Leterrier fails at mining any ounce of that previous charm or fun from the flying flash of limbs and flesh he has cobbled together in the name of cinema. It's at this moment we can no longer call it art, but product. Churned off the conveyer belt of Hollywood for a quick buck. It's warm Dr. Pepper drank from a can found in the park. The conceit is blacker than Coke in a bottle with no ice at midnight. It's a fucking scam.

But we knew that all along.

Remakes? Boo! For more than ten years now, we've all bitched about Hollywood's lack of imagination. You've said it. Your friends have said it. Even your mom has said it. The 90s was a quiet dry spell of lameness, which caused the 00s to kick the remake machine into high gear. Sure, there were remakes before. But not of this nature. Before the Aughts really got moving on the genre (yes, remake is officially its own genre now), any director stepping behind the plate of a redo had a sense of purpose and want. They believed in their once used property, and saw a way to make it fresh and new. That doesn't fly nowadays. A remake in 2010 is simply about changing the color of a horse, cutting out everything that made the original cool, and flying that lofty, rust-gutted template up a diseased flagpole.

General audiences have become quiet on the remake front because it seems pointless to scream about them any longer. Hollywood has truly won. And now it's taking a big old bloody shitmud on our collective ticket-buying faces. Clash of the Titans is Hollywood's way of saying, "We've conned you! We've brainwashed you! And there's nothing you can do about it!"

We've become complacent. And we grasp at our comic book adaptations, our reboots, and our twice-cooked properties to give ourselves a sense of complacency within the hallowed halls of the local multiplex. The remake apologists are the worst about driving this point home. They claim remakes aren't all bad. There have been some good ones. Then they sight The Fly and The Thing. That's it. The conversation ends there. They name checked these two films at the start of this new remake craze a decade ago, and they continue to sight these two films as we move into a whole new decade of blatant rehashery. Why? Because they're of the precious few that have surpassed their birthing stigmata.

These two films continue to succeed and resonate as entertaining enterprises in this late day and age because directors John Carpenter and David Cronenberg were inspired by the material. They sought it out on their own. The studio didn't come to them saying, "We need to generate a bit of cash off an established title." The name recognition game didn't come into play at all. Both were passion projects. Leterrier on the other hand was a hired gun. They threw Beverly Cross' 1981 script at his head and said, "Here, remake this. We need to earn a bit of money during Easter weekend and Spring Break." Who knows, if left to his own devices, Leterrier might have been able to make a great original flick. We'll never see that happen now. As this dude has been sucked into the redo machine.

The apologist is also quick to cry out, "The remake doesn't destroy the original. If you're going to be a dick about it, you can always go back and watch that old musty piece of shitty celluloid from 1982." This is a fallacy. It's a lie. After devouring the chunk steak of thick vomit that was 2006's The Omen, I haven't been able to go back to the original. Because they destroyed the story along with my want and need to relive it in any form. The same can be said for 2005's The Fog. Here was a movie, much like Clash of the Titans, that could benefit from a decent redo. Oh, but the producers aren't interested in our need for a good story. They just want our money, and put absolutely no effort into extracting it from us.

As we step into the teens, less and less people are apt to call bullshit when a remake appears on the horizon. Because it's absolutely pointless. A majority of these craptabulous dooks made back their money. If not at the box office, then on home video and cable. Which is a shame, because we, as the one's who hold the power to control this sorted business with our ticket purchasing decisions, are feeding the beast fist first. Every single lover of film needs to stop staring at these remakes right now. We need to completely ban them. I understand how hard that can be. I, too, wanted to see Clash of the Titans. I'm worse for this wish to watch it come true. And now wish I had some eyewash.

Here is a complete list of the remakes that have hit us like a Mack Truck over the course of the past ten years. It's a staggering list. And you will notice one horrible nugget of truth: There's hardly a good movie on here (save for maybe Martin Scorsese's The Departed and Peter Jackson's The Lord of the Rings). They're all from the dumpster dregs of discount cinema. And they arrive like a shit cake no matter how thick you frost them.

Year 2000

Number of Remakes: 8

Combined Grosses: $865.2 million dollars at the domestic box office

Whatever It Takes - $8 million

Gone in Sixty Seconds - $101 million

Shaft - $70.3 million

Nutty Professor II: The Klumps - $123 million

Hollow Man - $73 million

Get Carter - $14.9 million

Bedazzled - $37 million

Charlie's Angels - $125 million

The Lord of the Rings: Fellowship of the Ring - $313 million

Year 2001

Number of Remakes: 12

Combined Grosses: $997 million

Down to Earth - $64 million

Just Visiting - $4.7 million

Josie and the Pussycats - $14.2 million

The Mummy Returns - $202 million

Dr. Dolittle 2 - $112 million.

The Fast and the Furious - $144 million

Planet of the Apes - $180 million

O - $16 million

The Musketeer - $27 million

13 Ghosts - $41 million

The Wash - $10 million

Ocean's Eleven - $183 million

Year 2002

Number of Remakes: 17

Combined Grosses: $1.4 billion

The Count Of Monte Cristo - $54 million

Rollerball - $18 million

The Time Machine - $56 million

All About the Benjamins - $25.9 million

Spider-Man - $403

Scooby Doo - $153 million

The Bourne Identity - $121 million

Mr. Deeds - $126 million

The Four Feathers - $18.3 million

Red Dragon $93 million

Tuck Everlasting - $19.1 million

Swept Away - $598,645

The Ring - $129 million

Ghost Ship $30.1 million

I Spy - $33.5 million

Chicago - $170 million

Pinocchio - $3.6 million

Year 2003

Number of Remakes: 13

Combined Grosses: $1 billion

Willard - $6.8 million

The In-Laws - $20.4 millon

The Italian Job - $106 million

Hulk - $132 million

Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle - $100.8 million

Sinbad: Legend Of The Seven Seas - $26.4 million

Seabiscuit - $120 million

S.W.A.T. - $116 million

Freaky Friday - $110 million

The Texas Chainsaw Massacre - $80 million

Love Don't Cost a Thing - $21.9 million

Cheaper by the Dozen - $138 million

Peter Pan - $48.4 million

Year 2004

Number of Remakes: 24

Combined Grosses: $1 billion

The Big Bounce - $6.4 million

Starsky & Hutch - $88.2 million

Dawn Of The Dead - $59 million

Scooby Doo 2: Monsters Unleashed - $84.2 million

The Ladykillers - $39.7 million

Walking Tall - $46.3 million

The Alamo - $22.4 million

The Punisher - $33.8 million

Troy - $133 million

The Stepford Wives - $59.4 million

Around the World in 80 Days - $24 million

King Arthur - $51.8 million

A Cinderella Story - $51.4 million

The Blind Swordsman: Zatoichi - $862,894

The Manchurian Candidate - $65.9 million

Thunderbirds - $6.8 million

Taxi - $36.6 million

Shall We Dance? - $57.8 million

The Grudge - $39.1 million

Alfie - $13.3 million

Alexander - $34.2 million

Flight of the Phoenix - $21 million

Andrew Lloyd Webber's The Phantom of the Opera - $51.2 million

William Shakespeare's The Merchant of Venice - $3.7 million

Year 2005

Number of Remakes: 33

Combined Grosses: $2.5 billon

Assault on Precinct 13 - $20 million

The Ring Two - $76.2 million

Guess Who - $68.9 million

The Amityville Horror - $65.2 million

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy - $51 million

House of Wax - $32 millon

The Longest Yard - $158 million

Lords of Dogtown - $11.2 million

Mr. and Mrs. Smith - $186 million

The Honeymooners - $12.8 million

Batman Begins - $205 million

Bewitched - $63.3 million

Herbie: Fully Loaded - $66 million

War of the Worlds - $234.2 million

Fantastic Four - $154 million

Dark Water - $25.4 million

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory - $206 million

Bad News Bears - $32.8 million

The Dukes of Hazzard - $80.2 million

Four Brothers - $74.4 million

Underclassman - $5.6 million

Oliver Twist - $2 million

The Fog - $29.5 million

The Legend of Zorro - $46.4

Pride and Prejudice - $38.4 million

Yours, Mine & Ours - $53.4

Aeon Flux - $25.8 million

The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of The Dawn Treader - $65.5 million

King Kong - $218 million

The Producers - $19.3 million

Fun with Dick and Jane - $110 million

Cheaper by the Dozen 2 - $82.5 million

Munich - $47.3 million

Year 2006

Number of Remakes: 21

Combined Grosses: $1 billion

Tristan & Isolde - $14.7 million

When a Stranger Calls - $47.8 million

The Pink Panther - $82.2 million

Tyler Perry's Madea's Family Reunion - $63.2 million

The Shaggy Dog - $61.1 millon

The Hills Have Eyes - $41.7 million

She's the Man - $33.7 million

Poseidon - $60.6 million

The Omen - $54.6 million

Miami Vice - $63.4 million

The Wicker Man - $23.6 million

Lassie - $652,163

All the King's Men - $7.2 million

The Departed - $132.3

The Grudge 2 - $39.1 million

Flicka - $21 million

Marie Antoinette - $15.9 million

Casino Royale - $167.4 million

The Nativity Story - $37.6 million

Charlotte's Web - $82.9 million

Black Christmas - $16.2 million

Year: 2007

Number of Remakes: 19

Combined Grosses: $1.2 billion

The Hitcher - $16.4 million

Bridge to Terabithia - $82.2 million

Amazing Grace - $21.2 million

The Hills Have Eyes 2 - $20.8 million

Nancy Drew - $25.6 million

Transformers - $319 million

Hairspray - $118.8 million

Underdog - $43.7 million

The Invasion - $15 million

Halloween - $58.2 million

3:10 to Yuma - $53.6 million

Sydney White - $11.8 million

The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford - $3.9 million

The Heartbreak Kid - $36.7 million

Sleuth - $342,895

The Ten Commandments - $952,820

Beowulf - $82.2 million

I Am Legend - $256.3 million

Sweeney Todd - $52.8 million

Year: 2008

Number of Remakes: 18

Combined Grosses: $981.3 million

One Missed Call - $26.8 million

The Eye - $31.4 million

The Other Boleyn Girl - $26.8 million

Dr. Seuss' Horton Hears a Who - $154 million

Tyler Perry's Meet the Browns - $41.9 million

Shutter - $25.9 million

The Flight of the Red Balloon - $461,674

Prom Night - $43.8 million

Speed Racer - $43.9 million

The Incredible Hulk - $134.8 million

Get Smart - $130 million

Journey to the Center of the Earth - $101.7 million

Mirrors - $30.6 million

Death Race - $36.3

Bangkok Dangerous - $15.2 million

The Women - $26.9 million

Quarantine - $31.6 million

The Day the Earth Stood Still - $79.3 million

Year: 2009

Number of Remakes: 25

Combined Grosses: $1.5 billion

My Bloody Valentine 3D - $51.5 million

The Uninvited - $28.5 million

Friday the 13th - $65 million

Tyler Perry's Madea Goes to Jail - $90.5 million

The Last House on the Left - $32.7 million

Race to Witch Mountain - $67.1 million

State of Play - $37 million

Star Trek - $257 million

Land of the Lost - $49.4 million

The Taking of Pelham 1 2 3 - $65.4 million

Call of the Wild - $28,682

Public Enemies - $97.1 million

G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra - $150 million

Ponyo - $15 million

Halloween II - $33.3 million

Tyler Perry's I Can Do Bad All by Myself - $51.7 million

Sorority Row - $11.9 million

Fame - $22 million

The Stepfather - $29 million

Astro Boy - $19.5 million

Amelia - $14.2 million

Disney's a Christmas Carol - $137.8 million

The Box - $15 million

Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans - $1.7 million

Sherlock Holmes - $208 million

Total Number of Remakes: 190

Combined Grosses: $12.3 billion dollars

Number of remakes so far this year: 5

Combined Grosses so far: $486.5 million

The Wolfman - $61.9 million

The Crazies - $38.3 million

Alice in Wonderland - $311 million

Bluebeard - $18,603

Clash of the Titans - $75.3 million (and counting)

Remakes Coming Soon:

Death at a Funeral

A Nightmare on Elm Street

Robin Hood

The A-Team

The Karate Kid

The Sorcerer's Apprentice

Dinner for Schmucks

Beastly

Piranha 3D

Let Me in

Red Dawn

Yogi Bear

The Green Hornet

Gulliver's Travels

True Grit

And these are just the ones heading towards us in the coming months. As you can see, the remake machine has no intentions of slowing down anytime soon. Fight the good fight. Don't buy the ticket. Kill Grandma! Eat Food! Whoop-doo!

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  • monkeyiron • 5 years ago

    I mean all the movies start off backward timeline

    reply

    • monkeyiron • 5 years ago

      Ya the star war movies were prequel

      reply

      • spaniard-3 • 5 years ago

        First of all half the films on the lists aren't remakes. They are sequels to other films and such. The karate kid isn't a remake either. It has nothing to do with the original karate kid. The only reason the name stayed the same is because if it was called the kung fu kid it wouldn't have made as much money.

        reply

        • azador • 5 years ago

          @hahayeathatsright: If you are referring to Pegasus, he's a horse genius.

          reply

          • hahayeathatsright • 5 years ago

            f*ck all u crackers...i hate how yall get mad when black people in movies and sh*t...yall aren't even funny in movies..yall will run towards the tornado instead of running from it...all you crackers aint sh*t and never will be sh*t...yall be the main ones f*ckin rapin little kids and robbin banks and sh*t

            reply

            • emmytt • 5 years ago

              w/e

              reply

              • vanboy • 5 years ago

                Oh, and there "are" not "is" people. Not being a smart-S either.

                reply

                • vanboy • 5 years ago

                  "Their" stuff, not "there stuff". Just trying to help. I know, I know, you're not the only one. Just saying....

                  reply

                  • emmytt • 5 years ago

                    ParkWilliams at least u are smart and some of this other people are too what i am trying say at least there is people on here that know there stuff

                    reply

                    • azador • 5 years ago

                      @Just_Say_it: No, the Star Wars movies are not remakes. There was "Star Wars" released in '77 followed by "Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes" Back and "Star Wars Episode VI: The Return of the Jedi". "Star Wars" was retitled "Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope". Later on there were rereleases, not remakes, of these three simply updated with added scenes, special edition versions (basically director's cuts). After that, Lucas made three prequels, Episodes I, II, and III. None of these were remakes.

                      As far as 300, of course the story is very similar, it's based on the same battle with the same army in the same time period. 300 Spartans is a movie about the battle at Thermopylae; 300 is a Frank Miller graphic novel about the battle at Thermopylae and the film adaptation of said graphic novel.

                      reply

                      • emmytt • 5 years ago

                        also i have the freedom to say want i want and before u say something i already know u will insult me here soon so i am waiting

                        reply

                        • emmytt • 5 years ago

                          Just_Say_It the star wars movies were prequels not remakes god some people on here i swear

                          reply

                          • emmytt • 5 years ago

                            Just_Say_It i insult peopele ok then i was just posting about what Vanboy posted so w/e

                            reply

                            • just-say-it • 5 years ago

                              Park Williams, I think 300 would be a remake just because of the way they used everything. It seemed like they based it a lot off the old movie of 300 spartans. The whole plot and script was basically the same.The only thing different was the story about Leonidas in the beginning, there only being 1 king, and the graphics. And the new Star Wars are all remakes. I grew up watching the old ones and they are the exact same. Just different effects and graphics put in.

                              Vanboy, I agree with you looking back on it. I am Legend is a remake. I never saw the last man on earth but I have watched Omega Man. Couldn't remember what it was called the other night though.

                              Emmytt, how about not randomly insulting people and actually saying something about the movies? You know, the whole reason you're supposed to be on here.

                              reply

                              • vanboy • 5 years ago

                                "a" idiot? Well, I was just poking fun. But if you're getting upset...whatever. Just get over it. We'll all be dead in a hundred years.

                                And yes Escapist, I agree with your The Fast and the Furious statement. I actually have the first movie, about an accused murderer, who falls in love with his kidnapee. And you're right. The latest one has absolutely nothing to do with the other, unless you count a guy falling in love with a girl as part of the main plot.

                                reply

                                • escapist • 5 years ago

                                  The Fast and the Furious is not really a remake, it's just the same name as the 1955 movie - totally different setup and characters

                                  reply

                                  • emmytt • 5 years ago

                                    @vanboy i suck how for calling an idiot a idiot

                                    reply

                                    • escapist • 5 years ago

                                      @just-say-it - The Stepford Wives is a remake from the 1975 movie

                                      reply

                                      • damann81jb • 5 years ago

                                        Hey there how about read the defintion of a REMAKE . You mentioned that there are some movies on there that weren't good but yet the box office says different. For example: Casino Royale is not a damn remake. Star Trek is not a damn remake. Batman Begins is not a remake.....you know what this is why I hate reading articles like this your so damn opinionated and you lose concept of what your talking about. I see movies on there that were bad remakes but I will tell you one thing the box office speaks. Granted it aggravetes me as well but maybe what studios are thinking are hey you know what this was done but lets try to make it better because we can do so much more now then when it was first made. As far as reading this article it blew big time. You put movies on there like Nutty Professor II The Klumps that wasn't even a remake it was a sequel. Damn its sad when people make points and they cant differentiate.

                                        reply

                                        • azador • 5 years ago

                                          @just-say-it: And 300 isn't a remake of 300 Spartans, it's an adaptation of the graphic novel 300.

                                          reply

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