The Manchurian Remake

The Manchurian Remake:

    This was really a great movie: I was surprised how much I liked it. Normally I avoid remakes, because they're usually just stripped down, pointless, point-missing retreads, especially if the original movie was any good. And the original is absolutely fantastic, so my first thoughts were "how dare they", followed quickly by, "how in the world are they going to make it make any sense post-Cold War?"

    Well, they did it by making it be about Halliburton instead the Chinese and Russians, and borrowing liberally from Jacob's Ladder. It worked. I think the original is a better movie, but this version is definitely worth seeing.

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14 Responses:

  1. omnifarious says:

    I put it, The Village, and Fahrenheit 9/11 as the movies the politically aware should watch this summer. Most people look at me funny when I mention The Village though. :-/

    • jwz says:

      I thought The Village sucked.

      I'm pretty sure it was the same plot as a Twilight Zone episode, and it was better for being 22 minutes long.

      • omnifarious says:

        I thought it was a good essay on fear, and what people consumed with it will do. I could see some group of people actually doing something like that. I can see the US doing that all the time in our foreign policy decisions.

      • asan102 says:

        I really liked the Village. The trailers made it out to be something it wasn't and if you went into it expecting horror movie or something I can see how you would not like it. I had several friends and relatives who didn't like it the first time, but then they went with me to it for their second time (my first) and said it was a lot better if you already know what's going on.

        I figured what the plot was going to be the first time I read a summary online, because it reminded me of the plot of a book I read many years ago (Running Out of Time, which it turns out the author is considering suing Shyamalan over). I thought it was a really well done movie - the stabbing scene was great, and he got some pretty good thrills in (the monsters were pretty damn frightening even if you knew the secret).

    • belgand says:

      After having seen a trailer, read a short summary, and read a spoiler-free review of the Village I was able to quickly pinpoint exactly what was going on. This was confirmed rather quickly thanks to a full, all-spoiler, summary.

      This is just plain unacceptable for a film. I mean, fuck, I didn't even have to watch 5 minutes of it to figure out everything but the motivation. Then again, I also thought that the Sixth Sense was blindingly obvious from, well, from the moment he gets shot.

      Farenheit 9/11... well... I don't want to get into a massive argument about it, but I doubt it's a film for the politically aware either. If you haven't made up your mind at this point, if you aren't aware that Bush has done some fucking questionable things, if in any way you're likely to act like this is all massive, groundbreaking news then you're not very fucking politically aware. I'm personally not seeing it because there isn't any point. I'm already planning on voting for anyone who isn't Bush. Do I really need to watch a film designed to tell me that Bush is bad and I shouldn't vote for him? Of Michael Moore's various traits, "subtle" and "original" have never really been present.

  2. loosechanj says:

    I went looking for the book but couldn't find it, so I saw the movie instead. I can't imagine how it would make sense with Russians and Chinese! Both book and original movie are high on my must get list.

  3. gnat23 says:

    I had the same thoughts about the new one, along with "Frank Sinatra got replaced by who!? But, I have this curiosity that drives me to go see it eventually.

    What I'm wondering: does it have any touches of humor like the first one? The part with the "57" communist members in the State Department cracks me up every time.

  4. dizzyspells says:

    Hey, I just saw Dead Alive last night for the first time. So, like a good office slacker, I got into work and made it a priority to post about it. I did a Google search to find pics of Father McGruder 'kicking ass for the Lord' and your journal was the first hit on the list. How about that? We both live in the Bay Area, and I was just at your club for Spectacular, Spectacular! this past weekend. So, I added you to my journal. I'm Chris, I'm sort of new to the Bay in the past month and a half.

  5. romulusnr says:

    as much as i appreciated this new version after I saw it, i heavily lament the fact that the real point of the original movie was lost (and not replaced) -- that leftist authoritarians and rightist authoritarians are both working towards the exact same goals, with the core ideologies being merely demagogic vehicles for usurpation of power.

    instead, it was just about someone with corporate ties using them to lock down an election. yawn. the new movie then inspires outrage over the means, instead of the ends (and of the ideological sham being perpetrated).