Movie Remakes That Never Should Have Happened

Author: Kerrin Frappier, Entertainment

Over the last ten years, countless movie studios have sought to cash in on people’s love of nostalgia by producing remake after remake of some of cinemas most beloved films.

Some stray so far away from the original story line that they can hardly be interpreted as coming from the same concept, while others simply copy the first version and swap out the well-known cast for some fresh meat.

These movies never should have been remade. 

The Rocky Horror Picture Show (1975)

When Brad and Janet find themselves stranded with a flat tire, their search for a telephone leads them to a strange castle holding The Annual Transylvanian Convention and meet Dr. Frank-N-Furter.

Why It Shouldn’t Have Been Remade
When you think of a cult classic, this film should immediately come to mind. Its fan base is so dedicated that screenings of the film are highly ritualized–movie-goers dress up, bring props and throw objects, and shout at the screen when certain lines are recited. In 2016, The Rocky Horror Picture Show: Let’s Do The Time Warp Again was released on television to negative to mixed reviews. It should be noted that the TV-movie version pays homage to the popularity of the original by showing people attending such a viewing and including audience participation. But still, some things should be left as they are…

Grease (1978)

After a few dreamy summer nights together, Danny and Sandy discover they now attend the same high school. Sandy is poised and innocent while Danny is not quite the gentleman his summer love thought him to be. A nod to the naivete of the 1950s, the soundtrack to the film became the second best selling album of the year.

Why It Shouldn’t Have Been Remade
Although Grease Live (2016) did well in ratings and was praised by many critics, nothing can live up to the original motion picture soundtrack. When a school dance or big party needs a sing-along it is usually this soundtrack (that of the original movie) that gets people shouting “Grease Lightning” and “You’re The One That I Want.” But who can recreate the performances of John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John? Answer: No one. And we’re not even going to get into Grease 2 and how that never should have happened in general.

Annie (1982)

Who knew there was so much singing in orphanages? The titular Annie is a spunky young girl growing up without love and parents in New York City. Surrounded by her best friends but tormented by the owner of the orphanage, Miss Hannigan, Annie runs into a bit of luck after a thwarted escape attempt. When billionaire Oliver Warbucks sends his assistant to select an orphan to spend a few days with him at his luxurious mansion, it is Annie who is in Miss Hannigan’s office at just the right time and is ultimately chosen.

Why It Shouldn’t Have Been Remade
Carol Burnett, Tim Curry, and Bernadette Peters steal every single scene that they are in. Although a TV movie (1999) and contemporary version (2014) have followed, both remakes have received more criticism than praise. The contemporary version’s soundtrack leaves out the hilarious and highly notable Easy Street, and Miss Hannigan turns out to actually be a nice person at the end. No. That’s not supposed to happen. 

Footloose (1984)

In a small town where dancing is outlawed, a newcomer from Chicago arrives and puts up a fight for the town’s first prom in many years after a tragedy killed a group of young citizens.

Why It Shouldn’t Have Been Remade
This film’s 2011 remake was identical to the original — except where it mattered. The iconic songs had been retooled and frankly lost much of their charm. No matter how talented the leads are (Julianne Hough and Kenny Wormald are both professional dancers), it cannot make up for the loss of Eric Carmen and Kenny Loggins on the soundtrack.  Not to mention the fact that trying to put Footloose in the current era just doesn’t work — the dances work too perfectly with ’80s music and outfits.

Dirty Dancing (1987)

During a summer getaway at Kellerman’s resort, Frances “Baby” Houseman is immediately captivated by the enticing dance moves of instructor Johnny Castle. When his partner can no longer perform at a rival resort, clumsy, awkward Baby volunteers to fill in for her for the night. Baby learns the mambo but also lessons about love, honesty, and trust.

Why It Shouldn’t Have Been Remade
The 2017 TV movie “reimagining” was an utter disaster! Gone is the angry-competitive chemistry between Jennifer Grey and Patrick Swayze. Gone is the memorable choreography by Kenny Ortega. Instead, audiences were introduced to many new elements which were received poorly by critics and Dirty Dancing fans alike. For instance, Baby’s parents are estranged in the beginning of the film, and at the end of the movie Johnny is revealed to have choreographed a musical based on a book Baby had written. The movie was also remade in 1988 as a TV series which, like this latest remake, failed.

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