Planet of the Apes (2001)
Many people love Tim Burton but when he got his hands on “Planet of the apes”, many others cringed. Trying to remake such a classic is hard from the start, but we all had high hopes that were mostly crushed when we got to see the film. Mark Wahlberg as the star didn’t help.
Changing the ending was actually a good idea for those who had already seen the Charlton Heston film (and because many DVD editions’ covers ruin it for the rest!) but again, it couldn’t improve the original one.
“Rise of the Planet of the Apes” showed a decent prequel could be done.
The Stepford Wives (2004)
Some even find this funny as a standalone film but honestly, it’s hard to see anything good in “The Stepford Wives” if you’ve read Ira Levin’s novel or watched the original movie with script by William Goldman, a great mix of anti-machismo and horror.
With an outstanding cast full of stars ( Nicole Kidman, Matthew Broderick, Glenn Close, Christopher Walken), director Frank Oz turns the original mystery and terror into yet another Hollywood comedy.
Karate Kid (2010)
There are things you just don’t touch and one of them is “The Karate Kid”. Not just for the “nostalgia factor” but also because you know that any remake will turn out badly.
An ’80s classic, we still remember and quote Pat Morita as Mr. Miyagi. For the remake, they must have thought: “We need a famous Chinese actor, why Jackie Chan!” But neither he nor the boy Will Smith keeps trying to make a star (his son Jaden) were going to save this one from disaster.
The Pink Panther (2006)
I have to admit that I did laugh at some scenes of this remake (such as the famous “hamburger” one I’m including) but nothing compared to the originals.
Times have changed and that may explain why this was the highest grossing film in the Pink Panther saga. Or maybe not. Truth is, most people who’ve watched it wonder why they didn’t change roles and turned Steve Martin into Dreyfus and Kevin Kline into Clouseau, which might have saved this remake of the classic starring the unforgettable Peter Sellers.
Dinner For Schmucks (2010)
How not to remake a French comedy: Watch “Dinner for Schmucks” and you’ll know.
Actually “inspired by” one of the best in Francis Veber’s filmography, “Le dîner des cons” (literally “dinner for idiots”, known abroad as “The Dinner Game”).
If you’re a Steve Carell fan, you may want to watch it -some of his bits are funny and mostly sweet- but you may also be disappointed. If you like slapstick comedy, go for it (some people found it hilarious). If you loved the original, stay away from this one.