The Lives of Others and Let the Right One In To Be Remade by Hollywood colon No Wonder the World Hates America
Wed, 17 Mar 2010 15:01:03
Christoph Waltz Videos
There is a horrendously frightening trend that is developing in Hollywood lately. It is that of the remake.
[Let me clarify: remakes have been around for a long time and are done all the time. Just think about how many versions you have seen of Showboat (for the musically inclined), Pride and Prejudice (for the romantic), or King Kong (everyone else). Classic stories are endlessly recycled in Hollywood, reinvented for every drastic generational change or technological achievement.]
What I’m specifically referring to are the upcoming remakes of critically acclaimed and award -winning European films made within the last five years. Let's first take The Lives of Others, in development with a projected 2011 release. The source film, Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck's 2006 Academy Award winning Das Leben der Anderen is an incredible film about two politically subversive East German artists and the secret service agent assigned to spy on them. Each scene of this film is beautifully designed and constructed. Ulrich Muhe's acting is superb, making for a story that is subtly yet powerfully told. And this is where the problem lies. Subtlety is an element generally left out of American films. With the mass's growing predilection for explicit, crude, low-brow humor and action, how will the Weinstein Company appropriately capture the precarious political and emotional environment of 1980s East Germany? Fear existed not because of observed government violence, but rather the threat of and potential for said violence. I bet the Weinsteins optioned this story because they saw the potential to throw in some American characters, a few expensive explosions, and the now hugely popular Christoph Waltz (*in no way actually attached to this film). Why corrupt the memory of a brilliant film so soon after its release? Harvey, if you are intent on turning it into a generic piece of American action-thriller-shit, at least wait a decade or two. Please.
The same logic applies to Tomas Alfredson's 2008 Swedish vampire flick, Låt den rätte komma in (Let the Right One In). You won't be able to find the new project on IMDB, but believe me, it's happening. I heard the devastating news directly from the Swedish producer, Carl Molinder's mouth (who will in fact be the producer of the American version as well). What a shame that an interesting and novel vampire story will become known as a degenerate Twilight rip-off.
This is what I have to say to you, collective American audience: learn how to read some damn subtitles and understand that Hollywood is not the center of the world. Then maybe, just maybe, we won’t be subjected to the devastation that is the Hollywood establishment turning ingenuity into fucking trash.