Saturday, November 17, 2007

Sweeney Todd, Mobile Phones And Ancient Mobs

Just received a list of 2008 releases from Warner Bros. As usual these lists from studios always look boring, sometimes ridiculous and are often full of remakes. Undeniably there'll always be one or two gems among them.

We already know about The Dark Knight, and the rest aren't worth mentioning. Tim Burton's Sweeney Todd, The Demon Barber Of Fleet Street is, of course, noteworthy for Burton alone, but what has he done lately that has equalled the mind-blowing proportions of Edward Scissorhands or Batman, or even the madcap Beetlejuice?

One thing I can't help thinking though, is that everytime I see Johnny Depp as Sweeney Todd, I imagine Yakusho Koji in the role, and suspect Yakusho would do a much more interesting job!

Did I already mention "remakes"? Here's one in the WB list - the American version of Miike Takashi's silly but wildly entertaining One Missed Call. Watch the trailer, and then tell me if it isn't Final Destination with mobile phones. Ho-hum. It's always been my suspicion that Miike had been aware of the self-parodying effects of J-Horror now, its oversaturation, and decided to just have fun with the movie. It's also my suspicion that Hollywood isn't going to have any fun with the horror genre anytime soon.

Further down the road there's 10,000BC. I must admit the movie looks gorgeous, but why do I keep seeing the ridiculous "I try hard to look heroic" face of Gerard Butler and hearing "This ... is ... Sparta!"-type rhetoric whenever I see scenes of ancient mobs?

Finally, the one thing we should all be looking forward to is Spike Jonze's movie version of that Maurice Sendak classic, Where The Wild Things Are. It's slated for release in the third quarter of the year. I think it's going to be wild.

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