The Wolfman, starring Benicio del Toro and Sir Anthony Hopkins came out last year to poor reviews and a low box office. This was shattering to the studio that had planned for a money making trilogy to cash in on the recent drive for all things werewolves and vampires.
So you’d think that with The Wolfman ‘failing’ at the theaters that would be it for the movie. But no, that just is never the case these days. So instead of just going ahead with their planned sequel, they have reportedly opted instead to simply remake the movie… again. After only one year.
Universal is saying that it’s a remake of the classic version and not the one from a year ago. But the one from a year ago was a remake of the classic version as well, so really who knows anymore. Also they may call it Werewolf, further throwing originality out the window.
So we obviously know that remakes and reboots are big-ticket ideas these days, further proving that Hollywood is running out of original material. I cringed a little when I heard of the plans to remake Fright Night, but I could accept it, that’s not too out of this world. Then we heard of plans to remake some of the classics, like Total Recall, or The Crow. This time I did a little bit more than cringing, because I don’t see the need to fix what isn’t broken. But what can I do about it? Hope it doesn’t suck and ruin some of my cinematic favorites. And I could list probably ten more movies getting the remake/reboot overhaul, but I honestly don’t want to add any more fuel to those fires.
So now that the news is they plan to remake a movie that came out last year, I’m left wondering when it’s gone too far. When is the drive to make a profitable movie interfering with the original craft and art used in bringing these movies to us. The Wolf Man, made in 1941 and starring Claude Rains and Lon Chaney Jr., was mind-blowing for it’s time, and even holds up to today’s cinematic sensibilities, for the most part. When they remade it last year I felt it was unnecessary, but it almost made sense if it was done right.
But to move so blindly forward with another reboot this soon after the last one failed is absolutely ridiculous. It’s a slap in the face to movie fans, the ones who have to fork out 12-18 bucks a flick. Then they wonder why people download or pirate the movies. Because it’s not WORTH going to see anymore, knowing if it sucks they will just redo it. And then where is the line? While talking to Doc about this issue, I made mention of this being the Stamford of the reboot business. For those who aren’t followers of Marvel and don’t get the reference, I’m basically saying this could be the last straw.
So where does it end? Am I going to wake up tomorrow and see news on a reboot of Star Wars? Rocky? E.T.? Another look at Titanic? A remake of The Godfather? And these are old movies. Next they’ll remake The Hangover, or even more to the point, Star Trek… again that is. But that was a reboot/prequel that I could actually get behind, because it was awesome. It didn’t slap fans in the face; it just went a different way, bringing us a new take that doesn’t interfere with the old one. And it was a brilliant way of doing it.
I don’t want my movie going experience to turn into a repetitive excuse of studios doing anything to fill their wallet. If I go to a movie next week I don’t want to have to worry that next year it’ll be wiped from existence because of another reboot!
So to bring it back to The Wolfman, or Werewolf, or whatever you want to call it, I can really only pin the blame for this unnecessary remake on one thing.
Seriously. You want to know why The Wolfman didn’t do that well? It’s not because it was a terrible movie. I actually enjoyed it. Benicio did a good job bringing Talbot to life, and I thought the old school style of special effects were a decent homage to the original. But that wasn’t what the new crowd of ‘supernatural’ movie goers wanted to see. They want the underage shirtless bulging pectorals acting with shoddy CG and a lame and drawn out soap opera-esque love story.
It’s not the movie that failed at the box office, it’s the ticket holders. And its the true fans of the genre that lose out. I used to love vampires and werewolves, and I remember a time when a reboot was a good thing (Sort of). But now all I have to look forward to is campy and ridiculous attempts at reaching Twilight popularity while butchering honest to goodness Monsters. Because that’s the way it used to be. You went to see a movie about werewolves and vampires to be scared of Monsters. And it’s a tragedy that it doesn’t happen that way anymore.
So do I have hope that the new Wolfman or Werewolf will take us back to a time of werewolves that I loved as a kid? No, not really. But I do know now that if it doesn’t work out, they can just take a Mulligan.
What are your thoughts? Want to see another attempt at the Wolfman or just plain tired of all the reboots? Sound off in the comments section below!