Don’t direct a big-budget studio-driven science-fiction blockbuster – particularly if it’s a remake of a Paul Verhoeven movie, that’s the message we’re relaying today from the internet.
I’ve only ever seen “RoboCop” and “Total Recall” once, but once is enough to know that they’re very entertaining films that aren’t simply a product of their time – they work as well now as they did then… or at least they would if a studio didn’t have complete creative control and final cut. And that’s partly the reason why the remakes of the former films have done nothing to warrant confidence in Hollywood’s inclination to recycle.
The “Total Recall” remake not only flopped, it received horrible reviews, and largely because it was a lazy copy of the original apparently. Secondly, the upcoming “RoboCop” remake has a script that’s the butt of many Twitter jokes right now.
One has to feel sorry for the filmmakers as much as they do the audience sucked into seeing the films.
Sounds like Sony and MGM, respectively, had a little too ‘much’ input into these particular remakes.
No matter how much money you’re offered, stay away…. (having said that, if anyone does want to trust me with the next in what I hope will be a series of “Magic Mike” films, I am available. But I will not sell my soul or bury my ideas for less than fifty.. bucks.). And this is where I, someone that has never done so, state ‘struggling to raise money for an independent movie is apparently the way to go!’… *cough* if you don’t want to get rich, climb the ladder, or work with an A-list cast *cough*
Anyhow, two unflattering reasons to sustain belief that creative control can only be had when you’re not directing a movie for a large corporate – and both have to do with remakes of Verhoeven movies.
Firstly, an internet site called Cinemacon Rapudura (via Collider) is reporting that director Jose Padhila isn’t enjoying remaking Verhoeven’s “RoboCop” (not surprising, considering there’s been nothing but negative buzz about it here on Moviehole,on other websites, for months now; you’ll also have read that Hugh Laurie exited the production last week… for undisclosed reasons).
Fellow filmmaker, and friend of Padhila’s, Fernando Meirelles (”City of God”) allegedly told the website :
“I talked to José Padilha for a week by phone. He will begin filming Robocop. He is saying that it is the worst experience. For every 10 ideas he has, 9 are cut. Whatever he wants, he has to fight… ‘This is hell here,’ he told me. ‘The film will be good, but I never suffered so much and do not want to do it again.’ He is bitter, but it’s a fighter.”
And next, Verhoeven himself, director of “Total Recall”, tells TheArnoldFans that he saw the Len Wiseman remake of his 1990 film and was appalled by it. Again, the reason it’s so bad mightn’t have as much to do with the director as it might do the studio, who probably called the shots on the film.
But, for what it’s worth, here’s what Verhoeven says of “Total Recall” (2012) :
“I saw the remake and it wasn’t good, you did not care about anybody and thus all the chases and shootings an jumping became boring. Also: they took themselves very seriously and decided to leave all humor out. And the theme reality vs dream (by purpose not solved in our movie) was completely ‘castrated’.”
I skipped the “Recall” remake but I’ve heard as many bad things about it as I have the “RoboCop” remake – which hasn’t even been produced yet [Gulp].
I see that one of Verhoeven’s other classics, “Starship Troopers” is getting remade next… can you guess what kind of reaction that will get?