So…I only just found out they remade “Maniac”…
…With Elijah fucking Wood in the title role.
I’m sorry, but you can’t just remake Maniac. Part of the original film’s punch was that it came out just before the slasher boom. It was directed by William Lustig, who has a great knack for portraying urban grit. It was bolstered by bloody brilliant special effects work from none other than the godfather of splatter himself, Tom Savini.
A lot of these older films that are being sloppily remade today just do not work for the simplest reason of all - relocating them to the wrong time period. These films are effective because of when they were shot just as much as who directed them, or who created the gore effects. You cannot replace the raw power of entire decades of social and political unease with watered down, mass-produced horse shit from today’s idiotic and apathetic generation. Also, you sure as HELL cannot replace Joe Spinell with Elijah fucking Wood and expect anyone to take it the least bit seriously.
Like really, movie makers? Really?
Joe Spinell made that movie. It could have been okay with someone else in the role, but he made that movie a horror classic. It’s the same reason why the sequel to Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer tanked so badly: Not just because it was an unnecessary sequel, but it also had no Michael Rooker. You cannot duplicate/replace an actor’s raw talent.
Besides that, what were they thinking? Elijah Wood? They not only mangle these films, but they cast them extremely poorly. Is it so necessary to have all the leads in a film be generic attractive celebrities? There is no way anyone’s gonna convince me that this little hobbit-ass motherfucker that looks like Marty Feldman fucked Madonna:
Is at all an acceptable replacement for this guy.
Joe Spinell looked like a real guy - he wasn’t some limp-wristed pretty boy. He looked like someone you knew, or some dude you’d pass on the street at night. He naturally had the vibe of the average joe, while at the same time the talent and intensity to become your absolute worst, cringe-inducing nightmare. He played that role brilliantly - and from the standpoint of someone like me who has done research on serial killers, he rather accurately portrayed a mélange of the behaviors and personality traits that are often exhibited by known mass murderers. Instead of trying to cash in on Hollywood’s “flavor of the month” stock of samefaces, what they oughta be doing is browsing through all those unknowns and lesser-knowns out there, and finding those talented people with really great mugs and a lot of passion for the craft.
Of course, the insult doesn’t stop there.
Get a load of the fucking poster for the remake:
I am unimaginably beyond unimpressed. Especially when you compare it to the original’s poster:
Packs quite a bit more of a punch, doesn’t it? They rehash these movies in today’s industry, where everything is glossy, polished, and “safe ” enough for today’s pampered, molly-coddled audiences, and they just fail catastrophically.
You can’t just duplicate an actor’s depth and gravitas, and you can’t duplicate the political climate of a time that has passed.
Unfortunately, it’s probably going to take a lot more box-office bombs before the idiot producers trying to wring the last couple of bucks out of a dead franchise realize this.
Today’s horror film industry is a wreck.