The Worst Movie Remakes Of All Time

The Worst Movie Remakes Of All Time


Remaking a classic movie is never easy. You’ve got to appeal to fans of the original
while impressing a whole new crop of critics and drawing in new fans at the same time. It’s a tough balancing act… and it’s easy
to screw up. In the 1971 British crime film Get Carter,
London gangster Jack Carter returns to his hometown after the death of his brother. When he suspects foul play, he decides to
dig deeper and find out who was really responsible. As he delves back into the city’s world of
organized crime, tensions escalate and violent conflict ensues. The 2000 remake of Get Carter, starring Sylvester
Stallone, wasn’t exactly a bright spot in the actor’s career. This time, the story was set in America, with
Carter a mob enforcer living in Las Vegas who returns home to Seattle after his brother’s
death. But it wasn’t the change in setting that disappointed
critics it was the fact that the plot was formulaic and contrived in comparison to the
original, despite the fact that it was supposed to be a suspenseful mystery. Entertainment Weekly’s Owen Gleiberman wrote: “Carter, who goes to Seattle to hunt down
his brother’s killer, may have entered a labyrinth of evil, but his response to it […] is as
hollow as it is monolithic.” 1990’s Total Recall follows Douglas Quaid,
a construction worker who begins having disturbing dreams about life on Mars. He ends up getting a memory chip implanted
that gives him a virtual reality experience of working as a secret agent on the planet. But as the film goes on, the line between
fact and fiction becomes blurred, and Quaid struggles to figure out who he really is and
what he has really done on Mars. “If I’m not me, who the hell am I?” Here’s where the 2012 remake went completely
wrong: it isn’t even set on Mars. Instead, it takes place on a future, dystopian
Earth. And sure, that concept could have worked well
anyway, but this version of Total Recall fell flat in pretty much every other aspect, too. “If I’m not me, then who the hell am I?” According to some critics, the action sequences
were the only real bright spot of the film. CineVue’s Joseph Walsh wrote: “Whilst the action is grand in scope and certainly
high in production values it somehow lacks any tangible sense of tension or drama.” In John Carpenter’s 1980 cult classic The
Fog, a mysterious fog covers a California town, bringing with it the ghosts of dead
sailors who promptly set about terrorizing the residents. The concept could have been corny, but the
film’s slow build to its scarier moments kept audiences hooked. It seemed like a film that could have benefited
from a remake with updated special effects too. Sadly, the 2005 remake managed to botch it
completely. Although Carpenter produced the remake himself,
it just didn’t strike a chord with critics. The scares weren’t scary, and the ghosts didn’t
come across as threatening or intimidating in any way. And if a horror film isn’t genuinely scary,
it usually ends up feeling boring and muddled which is exactly what happened here. Writing for ScreenCrush, critic Matt Singer
suggested it could be one of the worst movies ever made. He wrote: “This movie’s not even that foggy! The clouds in two-thirds of this movie are
so sparse they wouldn’t even warrant a push notification from your phone’s weather app.” The Stepfather is a 1987 slasher about a murderer
who kills his family, changes his identity, and then marries into another family so he
can repeat the process. His new stepdaughter soon becomes suspicious
of him, and sets out to prove his identity and save her family. The film falls somewhere between horror, crime
thriller, and black comedy, and the plot is just interesting enough to carry audiences
along to a genuinely satisfying conclusion. But the 2009 remake of The Stepfather failed
to do the same. The original’s palpable tension just isn’t
there, the plot holes are distracting, and the climax of the film ties up everything
a little too neatly with a predictable series of events leading up the final moments. For the AV Club, Scott Tobias wrote: “Even by horror-remake standards, The Stepfather
sets the bar for pointlessness.” Originally released in 1956, Around the World
in 80 Days is an epic adventure based on the novel of the same name by Jules Verne one
that ended up winning five Academy Awards, including the award for Best Picture. The plot is pretty simple: Phileas Fogg makes
a bet that he can get around the world in a mere eighty days, and subsequently sets
off on a race across the globe. A tale like this might seem timeless, but
the 2004 remake didn’t take audiences on quite the same ride as the original. Instead, it barely followed the plot of Verne’s
novel, and ended up being nominated for Worst Remake at the Razzies. It also went on to win Most Unwelcome Remake
at The Stinkers Bad Movie Awards. Marty Mapes summed it up for Movie Habit,
when he wrote: “Around the World in 80 Days is the kind of
movie you should see if you’re looking for an excuse to sit in an air-conditioned theater
for two hours, and you’ve already seen all the good movies.” Nicolas Cage has a strong track record of
starring in films that prove a little underwhelming for critics, and Bangkok Dangerous definitely
falls into that category. The original Bangkok Dangerous is a Thai crime
thriller about Kong, a gunman who can neither hear nor speak. He works as an assassin for hire, struggles
to find real meaning in life, and eventually meets a tragic end. It’s an intense film, packed full of action
and emotion. Cage’s version, however, couldn’t hold a candle
to the original despite the fact that it was made by the same directors. In the 2008 remake of Bangkok Dangerous, several
key details are changed. Cage plays the protagonist, Joe, who isn’t
deaf or mute. The cinematography is visually confusing at
times, and the idea of a hitman who eventually gains a conscience feels kinda cliche. As Scott Nash remarked in a review for Three
Movie Buffs: “The burnt out assassin shtick is old and
tired.” The 1959 historical drama Ben-Hur is an undisputed
classic. Interestingly enough, this version of Ben-Hur
was actually a remake itself, and one which definitely improved on the original 1925 silent
film, Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Christ. For one thing, it features Hollywood’s most
iconic chariot race. It was difficult to see how a remake could
have outdone the 1959 version but that didn’t stop Paramount from trying. What could have been a stunning historical
epic turned out to be a box office bomb. The aesthetics were downgraded by haphazard
editing and lackluster CGI, and aside from a few exciting action scenes, little about
the film stood out. Alison Rowat wrote in The Herald: “A thrill ride in parts, as long as you can
forgive the hokiness, wooden dialogue, and long-slog running time.” 1956’s Invasion of the Body Snatchers might
not seem as slick or pretty as today’s horror films, but it’s still widely regarded as a
classic. In this sci-fi horror movie, alien spores
grow into seed pods that can produce physical replacements of human beings without any shred
of human emotions. A critically and commercially successful remake
followed in 1978, and another retelling, titled Body Snatchers, was released in 1993. In 2007, another version of the story was
released, this time titled The Invasion. Rather than creating a straight remake, the
writers tried to take it in a different direction and make the story more contemporary and political. The result? A film that was widely criticized for an inconsistent
narrative, one whose deeper themes were subsequently lost in the mess. For Slate, Dana Stevens wrote: “It falls far short as an effective sci-fi
thriller, not to mention the brainy political allegory it’s determined to be.” 1953’s House of Wax was a 3-D horror hit in
which a sculptor stocks his museum by killing people and coating their corpses with wax. It was actually a remake of an earlier film,
the 1933 Mystery of the Wax Museum. Audiences were mostly enthusiastic about this
version, and it did fairly well at the box office. All in all, not a bad go. In 2005, a modern-day House of Wax was released,
but the plot was quite different, preferring to err more on the “shrill teen slasher” side
of things. Now, there’s nothing wrong with a cheesy slasher
but compared to the impact of the 1953 version, this retelling was shallow and way too reliant
on cheap scares. Granted, this was probably obvious based on
the casting alone: with Paris Hilton in a supporting role, it was never going to be
taking home an Oscar. As Maitland McDonagh wrote for TV Guide: “It delivers some bracingly nasty gore scenes,
but there’s no spark left in the run-scream-repeat formula.” In the 1991 film Point Break, Keanu Reeves
plays an undercover FBI agent who has to investigate and infiltrate a group of bank robbers who
also happen to be surfers. But while the premise of Point Break may have
seemed clunky, everything still managed to come together to make a downright ridiculous
yet genuinely entertaining movie. So how do you recapture the magic of a film
with an unexpected cult following? Well, if the movie’s 2015 remake is any indication…
you can’t. The 2015 Point Break features some visually
stunning action scenes, but other than that, it totally falls flat. In a review for Times of India, Reagan Gavin
Rasquinha summed up the film’s fatal flaw: “Point Break comes across as a string of admittedly
amazing action sequences and sports feats with the rest of the film haphazardly built
up around it.” The 1985 zombie film Day of the Dead follows
a group of scientists and soldiers who live in a bunker in the aftermath of a zombie invasion. Several zombies are kept captive for the purpose
of research; an arrangement that obviously goes very wrong indeed. Before long, a conflict breaks out that threatens
the very survival of the human race. Now, Day of the Dead is obviously a pretty
bloody film, but as with all of George Romero’s zombie movies, it balances
its violence with a genuinely thoughtful critique of society. However, the 2008 remake forsakes any attempt
to bring a real message to the audience in favor of gore and guts. There’s no real commentary on the state of
humanity, the special effects look cheap, and the zombies are so intelligent and agile
that they operate less like zombies and more like evil human beings with superpowers. Writing for the Pittsburgh City Paper, Jordan
Snowden said: “Like infected zombie areas put under quarantine,
I would lock this film away in a box and leave it there for good.” Adam Sandler’s 2002 remake of Frank Capra’s
1936 film Mr. Deeds Goes to Town doesn’t exactly rank amongst his best work. In the original, Longfellow Deeds gets by
making a living by juggling odd jobs during the Great Depression, until he suddenly inherits
$20 million from his late uncle. He soon falls in love with Louise “Babe” Bennett,
and an unexpected love story unfolds. The plot of 2002’s Mr. Deeds is similar, but
the jokes are grating, the characters are bland and irritating, and the entire narrative
is dumbed down to the point where it’s practically insulting to the audience and to Capra’s memory. In a review for the Seattle Times, Moira Macdonald
wrote: “Mr. Deeds is supposed to be a celebration
of the goodness of regular people… but really it’s nothing more than a money maker for the
filmmakers and a pointless star vehicle for Sandler.” 1972’s The Heartbreak Kid is a different kind
of romantic comedy. Self-absorbed Lenny is married to clingy Lila,
and on their honeymoon, he ditches her to pursue a manipulative college girl named Kelly. He impulsively divorces Lila and proposes
to Kelly, but it becomes clear that her sole reason for marrying him is to rebel against
her father. At their wedding, Lenny ends up ignored by
almost everyone, including the bride, and this dark comedy ends on a fairly depressing
note. The 2007 remake of The Heartbreak Kid, starring
Ben Stiller, didn’t do quite so much to push the boundaries of the genre. The characters are nasty to the point of being
practically irredeemable, and the whole thing totally fails to differentiate itself from
any other film in the genre. In fact, Rolling Stone dubbed it the worst
remake of the year. In a review for eFilmCritic, Peter Sobczynski
said: “[The Heartbreak Kid is] an ugly, hateful
and deeply unfunny bit of hackwork.” Remaking a truly classic horror film is no
easy task, and the 1998 remake of Psycho made that crystal clear. It certainly didn’t help that the original
1960 Psycho was downright chilling and near-perfect — so fans weren’t exactly begging for a
do-over, either. “We all go a little mad sometimes.” The remake didn’t take much artistic license,
opting instead for a shot-for-shot copy of the original. Honestly, it’s hard not to ask why it was
worth making the film in the first place if the filmmakers would refuse to deviate from
the source material. Everything from the dialogue to the score
is almost a carbon copy of the original. Somehow, though, they still got it wrong. The film was nominated for a grand total of
three Golden Raspberry Awards, and won for Worst Remake and Worst Director. Nitrate Online Review’s Sean Axmaker wrote: “Even with Hitchcock’s shot list… Van Sant can’t come up with anything more
than a wan tribute to the master, proving it takes more than a good storyboard to make
a film work.” In 2006, the Japanese horror film Kairo was
remade for American audiences as Pulse. In Kairo, evil spirits manage to find their
way into our world through the internet, causing a series of strange and horrifying events
to occur. The film features two parallel narratives
that show characters dealing with the consequences of this paranormal invasion. In the remake, the unique dual narrative approach
was scrapped. The premise was similar enough, but everything
that made the original a cult favorite in Japan was missing. The film relies on grotesque imagery to get
its points across, but those cheap thrills aren’t enough for a film that fails to delve
deeper into any meaningful themes. Writing for the Austin Chronicle, critic Mark
Savlov said: “[The remake is a] curiously dull Americanization
of one of the finest examples of subtle, moody J-horror out there.” The 1980 film Fame follows a group of high
school students after they gain acceptance to the prestigious High School of Performing
Arts in New York City. As they study their respective crafts, they
face difficult obstacles in the classroom, on stage, and in their personal lives. There are moments that slip into melodrama,
but overall, the characters are relatable and sympathetic, and the musical numbers were
a hit. But the 2009 remake of Fame just doesn’t strike
that same atmosphere. It’s too slick and polished, like it was intended
to be an after-school special rather than a film about authentic, complex, and ambitious
characters. It lacks the original’s gritty edge too, seeming
to take cues from High School Musical and Glee instead. Critic Roger Ebert gave the film two stars,
writing: “The new Fame is a sad reflection of the new
Hollywood, where material is sanitized and dumbed down for a hypothetical teen market
that is way too sophisticated for it.” 1973 British horror film The Wicker Man follows
devout Christian police sergeant Neil Howie as he investigates an isolated island cult. He travels to the island of Summerisle to
find a missing young girl, Rowan Morrison, who he believes has been taken to the island
based on the contents of an anonymous letter. Howie worries that she’s intended to be a
human sacrifice for the cult, but what they have planned for Howie is even more terrifying. The Nicolas Cage-led 2006 remake of The Wicker
Man couldn’t help but fall short of the eerie expectations set by the original. Moments intended to be harrowing are instead
so absurd that they came across as genuinely hilarious, and the unsettling atmosphere of
the original film is completely missing. “Not the bees […] Not the bees ah. my
eyes, my eyes!” When a horror movie comes off more like an
ill-conceived comedy, it’s hard to walk away without feeling like everyone involved was
phoning it in. The 2008 American remake of the Japanese film
One Missed Call has the distinction of being one of the few films to score a whopping zero
percent on the Tomatometer. The original One Missed Call wasn’t exactly
a classic, but this just meant there was a real opportunity for the remake to outshine
the original. And it still completely missed the mark. One Missed Call just wasn’t scary enough for
critics, but that lack of fear factor isn’t the movie’s real problem. No, the real problem is that it’s just so
unforgivably boring. As Common Sense Media wrote in their review: “One Missed Call suffers from predictable
characters, overused conventions of the horror genre, and a plot that never really makes
sense.” The 1939 comedy film The Women featured an
all-female cast, and while one of the main themes of the film is the characters’ relationships
with men, not a single man is seen throughout. With today’s push for more female representation
in movies, you would think that remaking The Women would present a great opportunity for
Hollywood. Sadly, the 2008 remake left much to be desired. It wasn’t anywhere near as witty or charming
as the original, and the ensemble cast’s talent was largely wasted. Comparing the film to the 1939 version, critic
Linda Barnard wrote for The Star: “What was then snappy dialogue from meowing
madams […] now flaccidly flaps, lost in translation from old world to new.” Check out one of our newest videos right here! Plus, even more Looper videos about your favorite
movies are coming soon. Subscribe to our YouTube channel and hit the
bell so you don’t miss a single one.

Only registered users can comment.

  1. Hotel Imperial (1939).
    Willy Wonka in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (otherwise, the movie is enjoyable).

  2. I actually liked the American version of Pulse, but agree that it's nothing compared to it's JHorror original.

  3. So box office bomb and box office flop are sinnonims? I alweys tought that bomb means good, and flop means bad…

  4. Hmm…..I didn't even know they had remade Point Break and Fame (hence never seen these remakes). Agree with most of them on this list. I liked Around the World in 80 days, even though is was hokie (Jackie…comedy..yep), but I didn't know it was a remake.

  5. THere was no memory chip implants in Total Recall and complaining it didn't even take place on Mars when the original story did not is a stupid gripe

  6. Total recall….great film…some real shit effects….instead of re-making they should have done a special edition, for example, with convincing triple breasts and realistic decompression effects on Arnie. at the end….

  7. I didn't like Get Carter the original or the remake . . .Pulse American version I liked better then the Japanese version. . .Wicker man original and american version was awful . . .

  8. ….i actually liked the total recall remake 🤷🏻‍♀️😆haha like a lot. mostly the aesthetic+the action sequences though. but come in it’s nowhere near as bad as some of these other remakes- both on the list and not.

  9. Are you seriously forgetting about the destruction of cult korean movies like my sassy girlfriend and old boy. They should have gotten a mention too

  10. i have seen & enjoyed both Total Rekall films. yes, its all different but it works.
    i do absolutely agree with the classics they tried to remake.
    when i saw the trailers for both Point Break & Ben-Hur i immediately said no! & i was right.
    there's something bout classic films that just can not be captured.
    for example: Spartacus with Kirk Douglas would not survive as a remake… not at all.

  11. some bad remakes he forgot to bring up was Nikita vs Codename Nina, Swedish let the right one in vs the amercian version of the same movie. Danish Nattvakten VS american Nightwatch Huvudet över vattnet VS Head above water. Poltergeist from the 80s VS the new remake of it, Did i mention the awful new remake the hitcher vs the 80s classic with Rutger Hauer.

  12. Suggestion for Hollywood: If you want to do a remake, do a remake of a movie that was BAD but had a good story. Then even if your remake is only mediocre, it will still be compared favorably to the original.

  13. Any particular reason why the "remake" of Dumbo wasn't on this list!?!? That should have EASILY been the top of the list imho.

  14. Total Rekall: Poor Lori, fell for the wrong guy, does everything for him, just to go all in on an assignment. What could there have been if ,say a Marvel comics doing with, among others: Black Widow, Rogue, Emma Frost, and Elekktra ; bad, even assassins to fighting for justice, villains to hero(ine)s. Though the acters did pay the hero in some other flicks.

  15. Sylvester Stallone starring in a movie that is "formulaic and contrived"? Never mind Get Carter, name me one of his films that wasn't "formulaic and contrived"!

  16. I had no idea that Mr Deeds was a remake. I thought it was funny for Adam Sandler as I saw it in the the theater when it came out. As for the rest of the list, some of these I have never heard of. lol

  17. I'm really looking forward to the 'woke' version of CITIZEN KANE … for the biggest box office flop ever … 👌

  18. "It was the worst remake of the year!" well that statement alone says a lot about the film industry these days, they do so many remakes that they can single one out as the worst

  19. How about ANY of the female empowerment remakes
    Ghostbusters
    Occeans 8
    What men want
    Hustle
    Basically if they swap the gender to satisfy the SJW's the film sucks

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *