Okay, I’ve just seen the trailer of Spike Lee‘s Oldboy. I’ve heard of an American remake of the South Korean film by Park Chan Wook (the film itself based on a Japanese manga) back in college when it still had Steven Spielberg attached to it. Back then they were planning to adapt the manga series, which was quite interesting as the Korean film was more or less a loose adaptation of the manga. But now, based on the trailer, it would seem that they’re remaking the Korean Oldboy.
While I’m one of those few who think that NOT ALL Hollywood remakes of the original are crap (examples being The Ring, Let Me In, and arguably The Departed), I find this practice to be, while not entirely bad, a cause for concern. Has it reached a point that it is absolutely impossible to come up with new intellectual property that the only resort is to go back to established franchises or to look for foreign films, Oldboy in particular simply because Quentin Tarantino adored the film (for possibly the wrong reasons)?
In the end, this endeavor may have financial reasons. Heck, I’m hopeful that the produces are doing this in order to exposed the original work to a wider audience. In fact, let me end this poor excuse of a rant by “encouraging” you loyal minions of mine to see the original Oldboy. It’s definitely worth your time. A word of warning though (as I have students of mine who read this blog); Oldboy is an example of Extreme Asian Cinema. This means that this film does not shy away from graphic depictions of violence, gore, sex, and nudity. If you’re easily offended or bothered by such images, stay away from it. If you (my students) are reading this, STAY AWAY FROM THIS MOVIE. I know you guys play violent games all the time, but this is no game.