We, as horror fans, tend to give remakes a bad name. Films like John Carpenter’s The Thing, or 80s body-horror classic The Fly are exceptions to the rule; but we’ve been subjected to countless inferior and uninspired re-imaginings. From turning an iconic Vincent Price film into a teen slasher, to the misguided attempts to modernise Freddy Krueger – you might think we’ve had all the remakes we can take.
However, there are some films that deserve a second chance. With a few changes and in the right hands; some of these movies have the potential to be modern classics. It’s hard to predict exactly what films are set for the remake treatment (with bizarre choices like Children Shouldn’t Play With Dead Things being approved), but here’s ten films we think actually need a remake.
Larry Cohen’s 1982 B-Movie about a killer low-calorie dessert was produced on a notoriously low budget, even reusing sets featured in other horror films. The plot was inspired by post war consumerism and the corruption of marketing, inspired by historical attitudes towards cigarettes. Plenty of content there to remain relevant, but with a slightly elevated budget and The Stuff could have another chance with a modern horror audience.
The real life location of the Aokigahara Forest, and the mystery surrounding its infamy as a notorious suicide location is perfect material for a modern ghost story. This year’s The Forest didn’t do much with the premise, instead pulling out the cliche of long haired Japanese school girls for cheap jump scares. We’d love to see this one rebooted as an anthology, looking at the forces which have driven each of the forest’s victims to take their lives.
Dario Argento tackling an adaptation of Dracula sounds great on paper. There are few names in horror more respected, and it had been a while since a decent Dracula film had hit theatres. However, his uninspired and bizarre vampire film – which he stated he couldn’t have made without the current 3D technology available – beared no resemblance to his masterpiece Suspiria. We think Argento deserves another try, if he drops the 3D. And the grasshoppers.
Animatronic Chucky is what everyone remembers from Child’s Play – mainly because the rest of the movie isn’t actually that memorable. The adults use no sense, or real-world logic, and the child actor isn’t particularly convincing. With more kids opting for digital entertainment options, and the growth of ‘artificial intelligence’ style toys – Chucky has the potential to reach thousands of children and infiltrate homes all over the world.
London After Midnight
We haven’t quite given up hope of coming across this legendary lost horror film in Grandmother’s attic, or at a rainy car boot sale. But while it’s still considered lost, we’d love to see it reimagined. 2002 saw a recreation with the surviving stills and production notes, but we’d like to challenge a director to take on the challenge of remaking the Lon Chaney film – using the effects and equipment available from it’s original release era (much like Peter Jackson’s vision of the King Kong spider pit).
There’s no doubt Tales from the Darkside – The Movie makes a better spiritual Creepshow 3 than, well…Creepshow 3. It’s never going to happen – but we’d love to see all the iconic Creepshow contributors together again and giving us the final part in the trilogy as it should have been done.
The People Under the Stairs
This Wes Craven movie never reached the success of Freddy, or the notoriety of The Last House on the Left. Which is a shame, because despite the schlocky title – it’s a horror movie with a lot of depth. Some aspects of the film haven’t aged well, and while the messages of socioeconomic injustice and racial inequality is just as relevant – the sly nods to the Reagans might be in need of an update.
Urban Legend needs to be stripped of it’s distinct 90s cheesiness, because it actually has a great premise. A killer who exploits urban legends to slaughter his victims could be extremely eerie, and play on fears and stories we are all familiar with. Cropsey proved these tales can still scare, so we’d like to give this concept a second chance.
Creature from the Black Lagoon
The original is undoubtedly a classic, but we’d love to see a modern take on Gil-Man – while still using suits and prosthetics of course! Universal have tried to reboot the Creature a few times, with everyone from John Landis, to Joe Dante, to John Carpenter showing interest over the years. As long as they stay away from a full CGI monster, we’d love to see more from this guy!
Funhouse recreates the classic ‘deformed, isolated killer’ subgenre that has existed since Phantom of the Opera, and sets it in a theme park. It’s a decent slasher, but so much more could have been done. A dark parody of Disneyworld, the growing interest in abandoned theme parks all over the world, the survivors of the theme park freak show era – the park setting has so much to offer.