Thursday, April 1, 2010


Last year, I posted an April Fools joke on April 1st. I considered it this year -- I thought maybe a fake movie review or something. But then I realized that the entire Internet was full of April Fools posts, so I decided against it.

Instead, I'm posting about yet another remake of yet another Sci-Fi movie classic. Variety is reporting that director Paul Greengrass (The Bourne Supremacy) is slated to helm a (sigh) 3D remake of the 1966 classic Fantastic Voyage. Starring 60's B-listers Stephen Boyd; Raquel Welch; Donald Pleasance; Arthur Kennedy; Arthur O'Connell and Edmond O'Brien, Fantastic Voyage is the story of a group of doctors who are shrunk down to microscopic proportions and injected into the bloodstream of a near-death diplomat whose survival is vital to world peace.

Pre-dating nanotechnology by 40 years, the movie's "micronauts" make their way through the diplomat's body toward his brain, in an attempt to repair damage that was caused by an assassination attempt. Using then state-of-the-art special effects, the team and their ship (The Proteus) travel through the diplomat's vascular system, encountering thunderous heartbeats, turbulent rises in blood pressure and an attack by antibodies on their trip to the brain, where they use a laser to repair the damaged tissue. Of course, the antibody attack was simply an excuse to have Ms Welch in a skin-tight diving outfit. Pleasance plays the bad guy while Boyd and Welch provide the eye-candy. Science Fiction legend Isaac Asimov went on to write the movie's novelization, fixing several flaws inherent in the original script.

To be honest, I am not all that upset by this particular remake. The original is hokey and while it may have been cutting-edge in 1966, it hasn't really aged all that well.

Honestly, if anyone can do justice to a remake, it's Greengrass. He's already proven his skills at making exciting, tension-filled movies. And advances in biology, medicine, nanotechnology and visual effects can only improve upon the original. Of course, the whole 3D thing makes me crazy. Yes, I know we're probably stuck with it until true holographic 3D movies arrive, but it seems like every Sci-Fi, Fantasy and Horror movie slated for production in the next two years is going to be in 3D. And while the new optical 3D is certainly better than the old 2-color process, I for one see no real advantage in 3D filmmaking. If Avatar is any indicator, 3D obviously does nothing to enhance what all of the best movies have in common: great stories, terrific acting, intelligent writing and honest direction. Truth be told, give me Casablanca over Piranha 3D, any day.

More, anon.

1 comment:

Stephen said...

Greengrass is a really terrific director & could really do something taut & exciting with this material. I hope that you will be considered for Raquel Welch role... I am excited about seeing you in that thight fitting outfit, or maybe that is just because my laptop is resting n my lap.