Lately some people seem to be constantly complaining that every odd film being released is a remake, reboot, sequel or prequel. Prometheus, Total Recall, Jurassic Park 4, Robocop, The Conjuring, The Wolverine, Man of Steel â€“ it really does seem like Hollywood cannot come up with a new idea.
The Total Recall remake, a pale imitator or a stylish re-imagining?
But wait! What about Pacific Rim, Oblivion, Edge of Tomorrow, Elysium, After Earth? Are they not original pieces of entertainment, at least on the surface? Some could argue that Pacific Rim is just a CGI version of a typical Power Rangers episode, or a mix of two genres (Mech and Kaiju) into one franchise, thus stripping it of its originality. The same individuals could argue that Elysium is just yet another take on the dystopian future with a large divide between those that have, and those that have not.
Of course those from the other side of the argument could debate that with the medium of movies being over 100 years old, and the art of storytelling much, much older that there is very little left in original ideas, and that it is not what you do, but how you do it. The highest grossing film of all time, James Cameronâ€™s Avatar is essentially Fern Gully with blue Thundercats.
Thundercats are on the move, Thundercats are loose (sorry)!
Then of course there is the argument that such remakes, reboots, sequels and prequels are â€œnever as good as the originalâ€. In most cases this is true by default, because there is something to compare it against â€“ a film based on a book cannot delve into the character the same way a book can. But there are exceptions to that rule; Clive Barkerâ€™s Hellraiser is more complete with better motivation for the Kirsty characters actions than in the original novella The Hellbound Heart.
So, has Hollywood really run out of ideas, are they scraping the barrel bringing back old stories and milking existing franchises for every dollar they can? Well controversially, No - only a month ago the whole of the internet was alive and hopeful when Predators Facebook page posted an image, making us all believe that a Predator(s) sequel was going to be announced at this years SDCC. And we all slumped in dismay when the picture that caused the stir turned out to be promoting a 3D release of the original movie on Blu-Ray. We were all questioning what would and wouldnâ€™t happen in Prometheus? And now we are questioning what did happen. The same can be said of the recent man of Steel. A lot of people are going mad over the new Godzilla due for release next year, a second remake to a franchise that has an insane number of installments.
Isnâ€™t next years Godzilla just a pointless exercise?
Hollywood is a business, and just like any successful business they are in business to make a profit. Although they may not always get it right (John Carter, Waterworld), on the whole most movies that come out of Hollywood recuperate their costs through boring things like marketing and demographics â€“ in other words they give us what we want, what we like and what we enjoy. If they didnâ€™t deliver what we desired, then they wouldnâ€™t make a profit. Some just like to complain because they are never happy, yet you will always see them in the cinemas on opening night.
Do you think Hollywood is running out of ideas, or are the pessimists never satisfied? It would be really interesting to hear peopleâ€™s views on this topic.
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