Two incredibly disturbing bits of news came through this week that will leave '80s film fans disgusted and fans of modern cinema discouraged. Rather than coming up with new ideas for movies, studios have decided to greenlight two remakes of beloved '80s classics: the Kurt Russell/Goldie Hawn comedy Overboard and the kids-vs.-monsters actioner The Monster Squad. While any day when a perfectly good movie is remade is a sad one, there are a lot of extenuating circumstances at play here that make these two remakes particularly troublesome.
1. Aside from vampires, today's monsters don't mean squat.
Yeah, Twilight's all the rage, with its vampires and a few werewolves, but Frankenstein? The Mummy? The Creature from the Black Lagoon (a.k.a. Gill-Man)? Kids today are only vaguely familiar with the classic "Universal Monsters"-style stable of ghouls. The Mummy movies are less and less recognizable as such, and even Universal's big-screen, big-budget Wolfman revamp was a financial and critical disappointment. And Monster Squad is lightning in a bottle: the last time they gathered all of the monsters together, we got Van Helsing, one of the worst movies ever created.
2. J. Lo is no Goldie Hawn, and nobody is Kurt Russell.
Goldie Hawn is a comic genius. Kurt Russell is also really funny. They were both pretty damn good-looking, and they were an item when they made the movie. Where J. Lo will find a male co-star who has Russell's raw charisma and with whom she can re-create that chemistry is beyond us.
3. Michael Bay and Rob Cohen are the real monsters.
Michael Bay's cinematic offenses as a director have been chronicled often, but as a producer, it all depends on what you think of his horror remakes -- The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, The Amityville Horror, Friday the 13th, etc. Sure, they're scary, but they're also soulless copies of the originals. Meanwhile, Rob Cohen was the producer of the original Monster Squad, but now he wants to direct the remake. Keep in mind that this is the man who directed The Fast and the Furious, XXX and Stealth, and while his The Mummy 3 made a ton of money overseas, that doesn't make him Mister Monster, or even Mr. Good Director.
4. Overboard is... kinda offensive?
We're not the PC police, but have you gone back and watched Overboard lately? While it's pretty damn funny and entertaining, it's also a little disturbing. Consider this: Kurt Russell convinces an amnesiac woman that she's his wife out of revenge, then makes her clean his house and take care of his abusive kids, who torture her constantly. Sure, he makes/lets her sleep on the couch at first, but eventually they start knocking boots, and he definitely doesn't come clean before they do. I mean, it's not like he has her chained up in the basement or anything, but isn't taking a person with no memories kidnapping? There's gotta be some kind of criminal activity going on there.
On the other hand, here are some '80s animated movies we'd definitely like to see remade.