Welcome to 2021, horror fiends! We’ve put the previous year in the ground, buried in an unmarked grave, and left to rot. But like all good villains, it has clawed its way through six feet of dirt, resurrected and ready to destroy us all in its new form. As horror fans we all know that evil never dies, it only re-imagines itself to sneak back into our lives and terrorizes us once again. The New Year is all about new beginnings and with that in mind, we’re setting our sights this month on horror’s boldest re-imaginings, remakes, and resurrections.
We human beings love a fresh start, don’t we? We make resolutions at the beginning of each new year, we value sincere apologies like a reset button on bad behavior, and we recommit every Monday morning to a healthy diet after a weekend of binge-eating. There’s nothing better than that do-over feeling though, is there? None of us are above it. We love the opportunity to “gets things right this time” as though our actions will completely eradicate who we once were. Of course, we know this isn’t true but there is nothing more intoxicating than that split-second feeling of beginning again. And yet, there is nothing more maligned in the film community than news of a beloved classic being remade for a new audience.
Everyone has an opinion about horror movie remakes. They aren’t all as entertaining as we’d like them to be but they definitely aren’t all as bad as the internet meanies would have you believe. And let’s not forget that even John Carpenter’s The Thing and David Cronenberg’s The Fly weren’t free from old horror heads screaming bloody murder at the thought of some money-hungry studio executive fiddling with their childhood favorites. Thankfully, the horror community seems to have found a new appreciation for the onslaught of remakes filling multiplexes in the early 2000’s. Sure, these movies might never make your greatest-of-all-time list, but they definitely deserved better than sight unseen hatred.
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Our very own Adam Donaldson has been defending some of the most maligned remakes of recent memory in his Remake Redemption column and it’s with that same appreciative lense that we’ll be revisiting films all month long at Nightmare on Film Street. It’s about time some of these movies got their do, and Kim Morrison will be sifting through that remake explosion of the early 2000s for you. Riley Cassidy is putting a magnifying glass to some of the boldest decisions in New Hollywood that completely upended everything about the source material. Of course, not all remakes hit the mark and Chris Vogel is rolling up his sleeves to nerd rage along with you over the most disastrous decisions in some of the genre’s most polarizing remakes.
But it’s not all remake talk this month, so save some brainwave bandwidth this January as we pick away at some of the more surprising rebirths and resurrections in horror. Until recently, Folk Horror was as lost in time as radiated monster movies but Jessica Rose is here to help you relive its return. Colin Paradine will also be hosting a guided tour through the NOFS Video Vault while discussing Abel Body Snatchers (1993), and Julio Ibarra summons the devil this month in his deep-dive into the Satanic practices of Bedazzled (2000).
Let us know which remakes and re-imaginings you rewatch on a regular basis over on Twitter, Reddit, Facebook, and in the official Nightmare on Film Street Discord. Not a social media fan? Get more horror delivered straight to your inbox by joining the Neighbourhood Watch Newsletter.