Booze, Baseball, and another "B"

Friday, July 25, 2008

Ultimate-er Versus....

Word on the internets is that Ryuhei Kitamura, director of the upcoming Midnight Meat Train (nominee for "Worst Movie Title of All Time"), is going to remake the movie which put him on the map, Versus.

I'm of mixed feelings on this. Versus is a pretty decisive movie; that is, either you love it or you hate it, there's very little middle ground with it. I am in the "love it" camp, not only because it's quite an achievement, but because it's a fun movie experience. When I saw it at the 2002 Seattle International Film Festival years ago, I remember being just enthralled with it, and felt that it was close to perfect.

Having recently watched "Ultimate Versus," a version which incorporates some new footage, I've seen that the film hasn't aged as well as I thought it would. Mainly, the stock that they shot the film on was horrible. Either that or every print has been very poorly handled. The video quality of the DVD is horrible (people apparently disagree with me on that part, as my review of the original Media Blasters DVD on has 0 out of 6 positive votes), and the new scenes really stick out when mixed in with the 2001 stuff. With as bad as the video quality is, I almost wouldn't mind an update.

The problem that I have is that it seems Kitamura is planning on having it be an American remake, which presumably would have Americans in the film, instead of the original Japanese actors. Tak Sakaguchi is still able to pull of his KSC2-303 roll very well, and it disappoints me that he, and many of the others in the original version, wouldn't be around for the remake.

This will be something to keep an eye on in the coming months. I think the success, or lack thereof, of Midnight Meat Train is going to be the determining factor on whether or not Versus gets a remake.

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