15 Classic Movies That Are Actually Ripe For A Reboot
The recent release of Confess, Fletch, starring Jon Hamm as Fletch has us really excited. Hamm's a great actor and Fletch is a fun character who could've had a whole film franchise, so we're glad Hollywood's trying again. Since we live in an era of endless reboots and love nothing more than saying “but what about this” to people who make movies, here are some stories we'd love to see retold:
It is an indisputable fact that the United States of America treats its military veterans terribly. Our greatest example of this showing up in pop culture, John Rambo, got one serious movie before becoming a history-rewriting cartoon character. After the ravages of the Afghanistan and Iraq wars—frivolous excursions in the service of capitalism that did not warrant the human cost, much like the Vietnam War—maybe it's time for Rambo to get a 21st century upgrade. Not The Punisher, though. He needs a break.
The Big Sleep
If we're going to make new movies about cool literary characters like Fletch or Benoit Blanc, then we're long overdue for a new Philip Marlowe. Raymond Chandler's private dick should be living in cinema as an American answer to James Bond. Bogart is of course the definitive example, and we love what Joel and Ethan Coen did with the character. Chandler wrote more than just that one book, Hollywood!
We love The Big Short and The Wolf of Wall Street, but the fact that post-2008 anger at Wall Street hasn't produced more comedies like Trading Places is a major indictment of our culture at large.
The Creature From The Black Lagoon
With Florida actively sinking before our eyes and the Amazon rainforest under threat from COVID-lover Jair Bolsonaro, it's kind of puzzling that swamp/lagoon monsters haven't gotten a resurgence in horror films. Especially since these monsters often remind us of the mystery and beauty of Earth beyond human understanding. If the folks at A24 are reading, get at us.
Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy
If Lord Of The Rings can get the Prestige TV treatment barely two decades after a definitive film adaptation, so can this far superior work of British speculative fiction. If Martin Freeman, Zooey Deschanel, Mos Def, and Sam Rockwell are down to reprise their 2005 roles for six seasons and a movie to ensure we cover all five books in the trilogy, we're down to watch them.
On The Waterfront
A genuinely-moving-despite-cultural-ubiquity look at life as a dockworker in the 1950s. We propose an update that reflects another “invisible” workforce: migrant farm workers in the Americas. Toss a whole pile of money and an Oscar campaign at Gael García Bernal and let's do this.
To Have And Have Not
Half of this movie is the insane sexual chemistry of its two leads for-realsies falling in love. We're not re-creating that. It's impossible. HOWEVER! The basic story of a freelance contractor getting screwed out of a payday by a rich guy, then trying to remain neutral in the face of fascism, but ultimately forced to act—you're telling us that doesn't have an audience in the 21st century?
You've Got Mail
Speaking of probably-impossible-to-duplicate chemistry: Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan, huh? This movie still holds up as is (nearly every movie on this list does), but it's darkly funny that Hanks's Fox Books is a Barnes and Noble stand-in when Amazon has done to B&N what B&N did to bookstores like The Shop Around The Corner. Maybe the couple in the reboot ends up unionizing their local Amazon distribution center?
Whatever Happened to Baby Jane?
We'd like to think a post-Britney Spears Conservatorship America might have something to say in reflection of how it treats child stars, and we would like a reboot of this Bette Davis and Joan Crawford thriller as a means to say it.
Kind Hearts and Coronets
Forget Kenobi, have you ever wanted to watch young Alec Guinness play eight members of an English noble family who get killed in increasingly comedic ways so that the protagonist can ascend to a dukedom? If the answer is “I'd watch that a thousand times,” then we have a lot in common. Plus, Queen Elizabeth II's recent death has shown the world that England is super chill with making jokes about dying nobility.
A Few Good Men
Guantanamo Bay. Abu Ghraib. Homan Square. LASD Gangs. People today have a lot clearer a picture of what the military (and by extension) police are for, both at home and abroad. We'd like to see Col. Jessup try to talk to the TikTok generation with those grandiose Sorkin flourishes and see what happens.
Enemy Of The State
Watching this Will Smith and cranky ol' Gene Hackman thriller in a post-Patriot Act world is a wild ride. We're willing to bet both Hackman's character and Hackman IRL are just thrilled about being right about everything. Anyway, update this for the 30th anniversary in six years and watch the entirety of both Gen X and Millennials crumble into a fine dust.
Ancient Egypt/Old Testament Epics (But With Middle Eastern Actors This Time)
The genre name “Sword and Sandal” should sell itself. Understand: The Bible, as a narrative text, is nuts. Let Brad Neely tell you about Lot's wife if you don't believe us. And honestly, how different is YHWH and Baal squabbling from Poseidon bullying Odysseus? They tried to give us cool Sword and Sandal epics recently, but Ridley Scott is afraid of brown people, and the results were boring.
Lords of Dogtown
First of all, give us more skateboard movies. Second, give us a movie exploring the generation raised on Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 1+2. Like Tony Hawk said, the Dogtown generation is now Skate Dads. Give us a movie about the scenes that Nyjah Huston, Leticia Bufoni, and Aori Nishimura grew up in.
Chris Corlew went and played Tony Hawk after writing this. Find him on Twitter.