Monday, March 17, 2008

"Rosemary's Baby" Redux

I realize I'm late to the party with this piece of news, but I couldn't let it pass without making some type of comment. After all, Rosemary's Baby is one of my favorite horror films of all time.

Michael Bay -- director of Transformers, The Island, Armageddon and Bad Boys -- is set to helm a new version of Rosemary's Baby for his own production company Platinum Dunes, the group behind the recent remakes of The Hitcher, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre and Nightmare on Elm Street.

The original Rosemary starred Mia Farrow, John Cassavetes and Ruth Gordon in an Oscar-winning role. Directed by Roman Polanski in 1968, it's still one of the most nuanced, intelligent and effective horror films ever made -- an undisputed classic in a genre with far too few of them. (And frankly, not really a film in need of a remake, in my opinion.)

Am I the only person sensing a bit of artistic and creative dissonance here? Platinum Dune's string of remakes -- more blood! more gore! more tortuous and pornographic torture porn! -- is already well known. And Bay is famous for big, loud, blockbuster-ish extravanganzas that are long on special effects and short-changed when it comes to brains -- the cinematic equivalents of death metal dancing girls with extra-large breast implants.

Apparently others share my reservations. Reuters reports that "Platinum Dunes plans to be meticulous with the remake, knowing it has been entrusted with a jewel from the Paramount library." But given their track records, I think handing over control of Rosemary's Baby to PD and Bay is like putting the Ku Klux Klan in charge of a Martin Luther King, Jr. Day parade.

Handle with care, gentlemen.

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