A Look at Remakes (And Not All of Them Are Terrible)

Posted on October 12, 2015 at 2:19 pm

The blogger behind Phyllis Loves Classic Movies held an invitational blogathon on a subject many people have strong feelings about: remakes. Phyllis herself took on one, or I should say, two of my favorites: “My Favorite Wife” with Irene Dunne and Cary Grant and “Move Over Darling” with Doris Day and James Garner. (The original remake was to star Marilyn Monroe and Dean Martin, but she was fired shortly before she died and he refused to continue without her.) I was always intrigued by one difference between the two: the 1940 version has the missing wife as a much more independent character with a career, while the 1963 version reflects the era’s more limited idea of the scope of opportunities appropriate for women.

Other participants in the blogathon are just as much fun to read, including the vastly inferior remakes of “Double Indemnity” and “Libeled Lady,” the musical remakes of “Little Shop of Horrors” and “The Philadelphia Story” (“High Society”), and the both good and bad remakes (three movie versions) of “Love Affair”/”An Affair to Remember.” There are also three versions of “Shop Around the Corner” (one a musical with Judy Garland and one updated to the era of email in “You’ve Got Mail”). And there’s a whole category of directors who remade their own films.

What do you think are some of the best/worst remakes?

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