I’m very much against Americans remaking foreign films because of the horrible results that come about; major tanks that deserve mentioning include ‘The Departed’ which was inspired by ‘Infernal Affairs’ (2002) and ‘Godzilla’ (1998). That is to say, I’m not against foreign films inspiring American films. When the term ‘remake’ is used, most people think many different definitions, but I’m simply using the definition of “something in remade form, especially a new version of an earlier movie or song”. These days, in the music industry, the term ‘cover’ is used in the place of remake, but it means the same thing. In films and television, things are a bit different.
Not many people in the industry want to admit to remaking a previously popular film because it takes away from their “new” idea and achievements, but there are no new ideas, just methods, characters, places, and worlds in which the stories told take place. For example; though ‘Cinderella’ (1950) in America is popular and good, ‘Ella Enchanted’ (2004) changed the perspective and tweaked rules in the world to make an interesting story that is about the main character, and I’m sure the 2015 version featuring Cate Blanchett will alter some facts of the story and put a new spin on the age-old fairytale for the benefit of teaching lessons.
Some that were more popular in their original versions that have American remakes include ‘The Ring’ (2002) and ‘Hachiko’ (2009) which were both American remakes of Japanese films with the same name. The famous and funny ‘The Office’ (2005-20013) came from Great Britain, along with ‘Who’s Line Is It anyway’ ran in Europe from 1988 until 1998 before America picked it up until 2013. Today, it continues and the re-runs are in syndication. Also, not only are American popular films remade from foreign films and television shows, but also books and mangas. For example, ‘She’s The Man’ (2006) is close enough to be a remake of Hana Kimi, a Japanese Manga written from 1996 until 2004 that has been remade into live action films by Japan, Korea, China, Taiwan, and various countries of Europe under titles like ‘Hana-Kimi’, ‘Cinderella Boy’, ‘To The Beautiful You’ ‘Hanazakarino Kimitachihe’, ‘Ikemen Paradice’ and ‘For You in Full Blossom’.
However, films that ought to be remade into American versions, in my opinion, include a live action computer graphics version of Hayao Miyazaki’s ‘Spirited Away‘ (2001) or ‘Howl’s Moving Castle,’ (2004), both of which won multiple prizes and are still highly discussed today as a cultural representation of Japan’s history and people. Both, also, can take a darker turn that illuminates the wishes of the heart or the forbidden lusts of human nature. From Korea, due to their specific brand of humor in romantic comedies, ‘Love On A Diet‘ (2001) or the ‘Kitchen‘ (2009) would be a great place to start, especially to find a happy balance between the Korean and American humor differences. Also, perhaps, the American filmmakers can find a better and more conclusive ending for ‘Kitchen‘. A good idea of Chinese remakes would include ‘Goddess of Mercy‘ (2003) as a Martin Scorsese film or ‘When Night Is Falling‘ (1995), especially in the diverse culture America is and represents today.
I rarely get into the European end of films that ought to be remade because that’s the first place America goes when searching for fresh ideas to pull from or remake. Not only that, but there are several television shows and period pieces that still are derived from European culture. Not to mention, European-American collaboration films are always going on, it’s the Asian countries that are tougher to reach for America. But, in the near future, let’s see what great films come about and how they continue to grow and change the relationship between America and the international cinema front lines.
Any remakes you hope to see? Tell me about it below in the comments.