Movie remakes don’t bring same charm

Everything that is a remake once started out as a classic. Recently, however, it seems that more and more classic movies are getting remade, from timeless Disney stories to horror films. Naturally, we begin to wonder: are movies better off remastered or better off untouched?

Many will say that if you love something, let it be. Unfortunately, in agreement with this phrase, many movies that have been remade can’t quite seem to imitate the same charm the original film did. Horror film remakes, specifically, have a common quality of being unable to possess the same magic of the original. This holds true for the 2010 remake of “The Nightmare on Elm Street” (1984), the 2007 remake of “Halloween” (1978), and the 2003 remake of “The Texas Chainsaw Massacre” (1974). All of these films had much lower scores on Rotten Tomatoes than their predecessors, and for one reason only: they weren’t able to quite capture the “movie magic” of the original film. Not all movie remakes are like this, however; many recent movie remakes have been smashing successes. The recent Disney movie remakes of “Mary Poppins,” “Cinderella,” and “Beauty and the Beast” all received outstanding reviews. How does this differ from unsuccessful remakes? Disney, in particular, has been able to capture the essence of the specific time periods these films were set in and restore the magic in them. These films were all released in the last five years, five years that have been a time of successful cultural revival for the late 20th century. These films in particular, were all set in the 17th, 18th, and early 20th centuries.

The revival of all things vintage and the appreciation for different time periods led to the success of these remakes. A sometimes overlooked factor is the soundtrack of these films. When a classic song and/or soundtrack is re-recorded by a famous artist or actor, success is through the roof, because these classic (and often catchy) songs were able to reach the masses. Thus, reminding people of the original movie magic, contributing to the success of the film. Movie remakes are very hit or miss, and it’s all attributed to the ability (or lack thereof) to capture the magic of the original film.