Monday, June 14, 2010

can we bottle that shit?

Sometimes I really have to picture it happening. How some Hollywood executives sit in a fancy minimalistic feng-shui office eating sushi and snorting coke as they discuss the idea for the next block-buster. And it's in these meetings where they go "what about the karate-kid goes to china? Yeah, and he meets somebody Chan who becomes his mentor! And teaches him how to fight and so forth...", "Ok but isn't that kung-fu they do in china?", "Yeah, and your point is?", "You're right, kung-fu, karate,'s all the same crap anyway."

Yes, I am talking about the new Karate Kid movie. Again they are not bothered with continuing the story so I guess it's a re-boot? remake? Don't even know or care. All I know and the trailer taught me is that the KARATE-kid is doing Kung-fu. It's about the principals here folks! Treat the subject with respect and knowledge. Otherwise I feel treated like a dumb ass which maybe the majority of movie goers is nowadays, since they keep going to see this crap.

Another movie I haven't seen and won't see is Memoirs of a Geisha. My wife pointed out to me that this American version of this story was unfortunately badly done though visually beautiful. To begin with most of the main actors and actresses in the movie are Chinese and not Japanese though the story inevitably takes place in Japan. My wife also mentioned at some point the music they played in the background was Chinese as well. Hm, well its Asian anyways so who cares, right?

On the same subject is the American re-do of Martyrs, a french horror movie from 2008 (yeah, just released and already re-make on the way!). It's really interesting to me because I read an interview with the makers of the planned re-do where they fully admit, that there is no way to re-do this movie. So if it's not possible then it? What are they planning to film then? Uhm, well the subject was so they are going to do a similar movie, not really addressing that interesting subject directly, but a thinned out version of it? I fail to see the logic behind this project or what they intend to be filming considering their admission to it not being re-doable.

The reason why it's not re-doable is very clear to me. Martyrs is the most horrifying, cruel, inhuman, perverted, sadistic movie I have ever seen. I don't recommend anyone watching it unless they are fully aware and capable to stomach it. On the other hand, it's so horrifying because it's really well done. The subject is very interesting as Hollywood recognized, yet only interesting within it's terrifying framework that the french movie delivers perfectly. There is no way to handle that subject in another way thus making a re-do or even a different take on it impossible without totally losing the impact and the whole point of it.

The original is brilliantly acted and the story is very well told. It is not predictable at all where this movie is going as you begin watching it but when you get there it becomes spine-chillingly clear. It has to be said that I am a great fan of the horror genre and am not easily spooked or disturbed by horror movies. This is why I can justify my warning. The french have recently been producing many shocking horror movies putting the terror back into the genre. Well, as some of you may know the french have a history of shocking movies not to mention literature.

This whole project is to me again Hollywood logic with their ever-lasting quest for the next big thing and the question of - can we bottle that shit?

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