For instance, on one end of the spectrum, we have M. Night Shyamalan's newest, The Village. THAT'S lookin' good, so far...which is nice to see, since so far, M. Night hasn't impressed me, at all. In fact, in some ways, he's annoyed me, so I'm hoping for the best.
On the other end of the spectrum, we have Van Helsing, which has already pissed me off...and he worst part is that everyone else is gonna LOVE it, and I won't see or hear the end of it for months on end. Once again, Hollywood is taking established stories and characters and just winging it, making a film that is going to LOOK gorgeous, and all the kiddies are gonna cream their panties over it, and no one is going to stand up for what is being raped.
The site alone makes me wanna puke: (speaking of the classic Universal monsters, fucked over in this film) "Honoring their legacy while propelling them into the next generation of cinema, Sommers [the director] turns what was once classic into cutting edge." Yeah, in other words, changed them completely, used as much CGI as possible, and never looked back. Honouring their legacy, my ass. Right off the bat, have any of these people actually READ "Dracula"?!? Van Helsing was NOT a monster-hunter, he was a doctor. PERIOD. And now we're supposed to accept that all these monsters are conveniently in the same place at the same time and none of these people have moved away from them? And, oh lucky us, enter "famous monster hunter" Van Helsing, also conveniently, is now a member of some secret order, which I guess will explain all his amazing weaponry that makes no sense either. Hell, why add any sort of explanation for anything NOW? All we need now is a dual soundtrack (one, previously unheard modern rock; the other, suitably dark and atmospheric background score), a love story (oh, we have that, Kate Beckinsale), and some witty and inappropriate banter betwixt VH and his prey (yes, check, got that, too).
Congrats, you have the next trendy film that all the kids will think is OH SO WONDERFUL, there'll be a shitload of fan sites for Hugh Jackman (well, more than there are now), plenty of people deciding they like 'monster films', and talking about how this is SO MUCH BETTER than the originals, I'll see a million and one icons of the principle characters, and it'll be merchandised to the nth degree. The DVD will be rushed out with 15 hours of 'special features', none of which will do more than tip the hat towards Universal's creations, and another chunk of history will disappear into the cracks of Pop Culture.
Now, off the spectrum entirely, we have The Lost Skeleton Of Cadavra, which I'm MASSIVELY looking forward to. Made to be a spoof of all the old serials and monster flicks, it's so overdone as to be preposterous...and looks like ass-loads of fun. It's 'off the spectrum' because these guys didn't care about making a film that would win Oscars and impress the Pop Culture Plebes, they just made a film that was funny and that they wanted to do. Kudos to them, and kudos again.