Are there any words in modern-day cinema with as many negative connotations as 'sequel' or 'remake'? Well, yes, probably. But that doesn't mean that they aren't almost treated as dirty words by many movie buffs out there. It's easy to see why. There have been a truly insane amount of remakes and sequels released in cinemas in recent years. The argument that Hollywood has lost its originality rears it's head every time one of these movies comes out and, to be honest, it will keep happening as long as they keep getting made.
But we are of the opinion that remakes and sequels are not inherently bad things. While there are obviously many bad ones, there have been a number of great ones over the years too, even in the horror genre. Zack Snyder's Dawn Of The Dead was excellent, and The Conjuring 2 was a worthy sequel, for example.
Therefore, we've decided to put together a list of movies we'd like to see either remade or given a sequel. Enjoy!
10. Urban Legend (Remake)
Released in 1998 at the height of the teen horror boom that exploded in the wake of the massive success of Scream, Urban Legend is not a particularly good movie. It's highly watchable in it's own way, for sure. But it isn't scary in the least and the plot gets a little ridiculous towards the end. But, the cast is pretty game, including a young Jared Leto, Alicia Witt and Joshua Jackson, who had just become a star thanks to TV weepie Dawson's Creek.
Crucially, the concept of the movie is what most people remember, and it's a doozy. A serial killer is stalking students at a New England University, using the methods of death found in various urban legends. The killer hides in the backseat of a victim's car, and at another point hangs a character whose shoes scrape on the roof of the car his female friend is in. We think this concept could be revisited in a better manner. It has the potential to make a very scary horror movie. A remake would surely be better than the two dreadful sequels this received, right?
9. Event Horizon (Remake/Sequel)
Event Horizon was a box-office flop when it was released in 1997 and was reviewed pretty dismally. It has since become a cult movie, though, and many horror fans will extol it's virtues if given half the chance. We reckon that it's easily director Paul WS Anderson's best film. Admittedly, that is faint praise considering his CV includes the Resident Evil franchise and the execrable AVP: Alien Vs Predator, but hear us out about Event Horizon.
The movie is one of the better sci-fi/horror mash-ups around. It features some truly horrifying imagery and an atmosphere dripping with dread. Playing like a mix of Alien and Hellraiser, we reckon it's an underrated gem and would love to see a remake or sequel with an increased budget and a visionary writer/director.
8. The Prophecy (Remake)
Christopher Walken is one our favourite cinematic weirdos. He's always entertaining to watch, no matter what dreck he appears in. Sadly, in recent years his career has amounted to mostly dreck, and the legitimately good roles seem to have dried up substantially. Back in 1995, though, he made this fantasy-horror film which became a cult favourite. It spawned four direct-to-video sequels (which, rest assured, we will not talk about) but we think a remake wouldn't go amiss.
Stories of evil angels and demons fighting heaven's war on Earth have become quite popular in recent years. This is thanks to shows like Supernatural, movies like Legion and comic books like Preacher. The Prophecy was ahead of it's time in 1995, and though it might be a bit dated now, the story is still solid and could be given a dust-off. If a remake was to cast actors as good as Walken and Viggo Mortensen (who played a super-creepy Lucifer)? That could be something very interesting indeed.
7. Haute Tension (Remake)
This mega-gory French horror was named Switchblade Romance in the UK (which, you'll agree, is a badass title) and High Tension in the US. It helped launch the career of director Alexandre Aja. He went on to direct The Hills Have Eyes remake, which was awesome, and Piranha 3D which...wasn't.
The film was criticised in certain quarters for being excessively bloody and for helping to popularise the 'torture porn' subgenre. But we don't believe it fits in with films of that nature. Yes, it is violent, but it is also unbearably tense and features a great twist in the tale. It's actually surprising to us that it hasn't been remade in the 13 years since it's initial release.
6. 30 Days Of Night (Remake/Sequel)
This is a movie that should've received a theatrical sequel within a few years of its release in 2007. It was a financial success and received mostly positive reviews. 30 Days of Night was visually stylish and well directed by David Slade (The Twilight Sage: Eclipse) and the cast was good. The movie (and the comic that inspired it) features one of the best hooks in horror history. The Alaskan town of Barrow is preparing for its annual 30 days of night, in which there will be no sunlight for a month. A gang of vicious vampires then attack the town and are free to feast at all points of the day with no fear of the sun.
The original comic book miniseries has had several sequels over the years written by co-creator Steve Niles. Though the movie did receive a direct-to-video sequel in 2010 (Dark Days), it has largely been forgotten. We think there is plenty of scope here for resurrecting the concept theatrically, in either a remake or sequel form. They could even tell a completely different story with different characters, but have a few references to the original for fans. C'mon Hollywood, make it happen!
5. Shocker (Remake)
The late horror legend Wes Craven's movies have already been remade several times over the years. A Nightmare On Elm Street, The Hills Have Eyes and The Last House On The Left have all been reworked, with varying degrees of success. But we reckon there's one underrated and bizarre horror-comedy gem in his back catalogue that could be updated for a modern audience...
Shocker. Yep, the movie with Agent Skinner from The X-Files as death-row serial killer Horace Pinker, a man who becomes a being of pure-electricity after 'dying' in the electric chair. He is then able to possess people and continue his murderous rampage.
It's just as silly as it sounds, and is played for ghoulish laughs throughout. The movie has a cult following, but didn't exactly receive glowing reviews. We think it could be remade, with modern technology and a savvy director like Drew Goddard at the helm.
4. In The Mouth Of Madness (Remake)
John Carpenter, like Wes Craven, has already seen a handful of his early movies remade for modern audiences. Halloween, Assault On Precinct 13, The Fog and The Thing have all received reduxes. We think he has one other horror offering that would benefit from a second attempt. His original movie has a dynamite premise but flawed execution, you see.
In The Mouth Of Madness stars Sam Neill and Charlton Heston. It uses the themes of the works of legendary horror author HP Lovecraft to great effect. Neill plays an insurance fraud investigator hired to investigate the disappearance of Sutter Cane, a horror novelist whose latest book caused some readers to go insane. This premise is creepy and interesting, but the movie itself mostly falls apart as it goes along. We think it deserves another shot, though, as anything inspired by Lovecraft has the potential for greatness.
3. Oculus (Sequel)
Oculus is a top notch horror film that gets under the skin with it's creepy story and inventive direction from Mike Flanagan. It was released in 2014 to very positive reviews and became a minor box office success. This was particularly impressive when you consider one of the producers was WWE Studios, which isn't known for threatrical releases that make good money! To be fair, though, one of the other producers was Blumhouse, who have made a fine art out of making bank on low budget horror movies.
Director Flanagan has moved on to direct Hush, another horror that was released straight to Netflix, and the recently released Ouija: Origin Of Evil. But no mention of an Oculus sequel. Now, while we recognize that the number of legitimately good horror sequels is small, and perhaps it would be better left alone, we loved the story behind Oculus. And we'd like to see another one, thank you very much!
2. The Strangers (Sequel)
A sequel to the Liv Tyler/Scott Speedman home invasion thriller has been in some stage of development from as far back as 2008, when the first movie was released to commercial success. In 2011, minor story details were released and it was said that the movie would begin filming soon...but it didn't. Liv Tyler then said it would see release in 2014, but that also never happened. The sequel was then scheduled for a December 2016 release, but was then removed from the schedule.
So what is happening? It's extremely unlike movie studios to leave money on the table. Even the most minor horror hit will usually get some sort of sequel. Also odd was the fact that it took writer-director Bryan Bertino 6 years to get another film made. Which resulted in the straight-to-DVD horror Mockingbird. We'd personally love him to revisit the world of The Strangers. He created a truly unnerving movie with the potential for more stories to be told.
1. Audition (Remake)
Audition is one of those foreign language films that many cinephiles believe is untouchable. They would say it should never be remade, as any Hollywood adaptation would remove the rough edges and sanitize it. In fact, when it was announced in September 2014 that writer-director Richard Gray would be making an Americanized remake of Audtion, he laughed that the 'knifes were out' for him.
Perhaps these naysayers got their wish in the end, though, as nothing has materialised in the two years since. The film isn't even listed on Gray's IMDB page. There has also been no official announcement that development has been stopped either. Strange. Whatever the answer, we don't believe that an English language remake is necessarily a terrible idea. It has been long enough since the release of the original that many audience members will not know of it, and therefore can be surprised by the movie's grisly third act all over again! We hope it does eventually find its way to screens.
Are there any other horror movies that you'd like to see remade or given another installment? Let us know, people!