So…last Monday saw some pretty explosive news pertaining to a remake of Robert Clouse’s 1973 movie, Enter The Dragon. And like clockwork, the internet has, once again, fallen into entropy.
While responses have been a general mixture between likes, shares and retweets, actual commentary from folks have ranged from cautiously optimistic to wholly and purely cynical. Jokes pertaining to whitewashing with comments optioning Scarlett Johansson or Matt Damon have comprised much of the banter from critics of this latest update and one guy on my fan page voted that “we” should dig up dirt on attached director, David Leitch (Deadpool 2).
Yeah… I don’t know what this “we” shit is about and I’m no muckraker, so you can count me out.
More to the point though, personally I’ve always been a champion of remakes despite what some critics may suggest. You needn’t look further than my articles keeping up with Joe Carnahan’s upcoming reinstallment of The Raid or my grief over the unprosperous sequel death of Dredd 3D whose amazing performance from Karl Urbab notably outdoes that of Sylvester Stallone.
This isn’t to say that I don’t get where opponents are coming from. I do. I even understand the purity hailed by Bruce Lee fans who think his movies are sacrosanct and should remain untouchable now and forevermore. I just don’t fully agree with it.
What I do side with is the oftentimes franchise fatigue that comes from feeling saturated by a seemingly nonstop steam of films from a certain IP (looking at you, Star Wars). Remakes, however, are a different beast depending on various factors, and they’re not exactly the latest film trend either seeing as how remakes have been a thing in movies long before most of us Xennials and Millenials were even born.
Seven Samurai? Hard Times? Those are both original films whose remakes stand as favorites to this day among us movie fans who love us some chanbara or a good Western, or some good old-fashioned Vandammage.
As for Enter The Dragon, a film noted fondly as a low-rent spy flick with an Asian lead, some folks in my purview have stated the film is pretty low brow and for the most part, the film hasn’t aged well in some aspects, particularly with its story as much as its been echoed in later films (see Mortal Kombat). Furthermore, other points I’ve read include that really, the only reason why the film is so memorable is because of the soundtrack, memorable quotes, the action and having such a charasmatic star in Bruce Lee.
Personally, I always wondered what happened to previous potential efforts dating back a decade ago. Talk of Korean actor and singer, Rain (Ninja Assassin), drew me to feel like he deserved a shot at such a film, and I once wouldn’t have minded even Donnie Yen carrying the torch given how many times he’s performed in such a vein (see Fist Of Fury, Legend Of The Wolf and Legend Of The Fist: Return Of Chen Zhen for references).
Of course, now we’re talking vision and how to approach such a remake; Another commentor proposed the idea that the only way a film like this would work is if producers didn’t try to cast “another” Bruce Lee, but rather put the work in finding genuine talent to help tell a fresh story that holds a candle to Clouse’s original film and pays due respect to the late legendary martial arts star and philosopher.
On that note, I will add that at least one major mistake the folks behind the scenes on this project should NOT make is to not cast an Asian star. The move is a must, and anything else would be a severe misstep in an era where continuous and mindful statistical study puts emphasis on the need for minority representation.
I could go on, but I would rather leave it to you readers to discuss for all the pros and cons about remakes of movies. Share your thoughts with us in a comment below or on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or our Forums in the left side menu.