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Play some Skynrd!

9 August 2013

If you’ve been on the Internet — like, at all — you’ve probably heard someone bitching about a reboot or remake of a film that’s coming out sometime in the near future (or has already come out). Said bitching was probably accompanied by the now-familiar phrase “Hollywood is out of ideas.”

I kind of get why some people complain about reboots and remakes, but I wonder why we never complain about covers. It’s the same principle at work — a band remakes a song that someone else already made before them. Some changes happen along the way, as is the nature of different artists putting a different spin on things. An illustrative example: The Misfits original Die, Die, Die My Darling vs. the Metallica version of the same song. The original was, in my opinion, better. It didn’t need to be remade. But I didn’t feel upset when Metallica covered it. I didn’t feel like they were “raping my childhood” (another common complaint in the reboot/remake rant). I preferred the original, and that’s about as far as I went with it.

Truth is, we’ve been pulling from the work of other artists for years now. Movies have been based on books since there have been movies. We started remaking and rebooting movies well before most people thought — the 1939 version of “The Wizard of Oz” — that is, the one we all grew up with — was a remake of a 1925 film (which was actually a remake of another version of the same film from 1910).

Thing is, unless it’s George Lucas remaking his own films (which he can’t really do anymore thanks to the $4 billion Disney sale), no one is erasing the version of the film you originally liked. They’re just putting a new spin on it to try and make money… just like the original filmmakers did when they made their movie. It’s cool, people. Paul Verhoven’s “RoboCop” isn’t going anywhere just because the dude from “The Killing” is playing him now. Hollywood will still be all too happy to sell you a Blu-Ray of whichever version you prefer.

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The ULTIMATE version.

 Yeah, sure. There are about a hundred different books I’d like to see made into movies. I don’t feel the need to watch a reboot of something like Back to the Future, because I feel like they pretty much did that right the first (three) times. But if a remake of that one comes out, I won’t be upset. I’ll just vote with my wallet by not going to see it.

It’s entirely possible I’m missing something, though. Has a remake or a reboot ever actually made you angry? Or a cover, even? Share in the comments!

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