Adam Berg to Direct VIDEODROME Remake Written by Ehren Kruger; Misses Point of David Cronenberg’s VIDEODROME

by     Posted 2 years, 93 days ago

videodrome-james-woods-slice

I’ve been doing this long enough to know that I can easily be wrong about a project, especially when it’s in its nascent stages.  So much changes over the course of production, and sometimes a logline can’t do a premise justice.  But I can’t wrap my mind around anyone remaking Videodrome.  And yet, today Deadline reports that Adam Berg, who has directed popular commercials, is on board to helm a remake of David Cronenberg‘s classic film.  Ehren Kruger, who’s been attached to the project since 2009 and is the screenwriter behind such masterpieces as Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen and Reindeer Games, scripted the remake.

For those unfamiliar with the original film, it’s about a TV executive looking for the sleaziest possible content for his channel, Civic TV, and comes across the disturbing show “Videodrome”, which causes him to have disturbing hallucinations.  According to Deadline, Berg and Kruger plan to “modernize the concept, infusing it with the possibilities of nano-technology and blow it up into a large-scale sci-fi action thriller.”  Hit the jump for my reaction.

videodrome-movieVideodrome is a challenging film.  It’s also a signature movie for Cronenberg.  It is an essential movie in his filmography, and features themes he has continued to revisit. Nano-technology, nor any kind of technology, has anything to do with it.  That’s one of the reasons Cronenberg’s Videodrome is great.  The film never attempts to explain why Videodrome would cause hallucinations and drive its protagonist, Max Renn (James Woods), insane.  The “how” of Videodrome is unimportant.  It’s what the show represents.  And what it’s presenting is a world where TV can literally rot your brain.  When we watch movies and TV shows about sex and violence, we change our relationship to those things and in so doing, change ourselves.  Videodrome breaks down the barrier and twists its protagonist to the point where he believes his flesh has absorbed a handgun.

I know remakes can be harmless because the original will still be there for anyone to watch.  But it’s just wrong.  It’s wrong for Berg and Kruger to be so lazy that they want to hop on someone else’s hard work, and then completely miss the point of what that work seeks out to accomplish.  If they really want to make a movie about “the possibilities of nano-technology and blow it up into a large-scale sci-fi action thriller,” then they don’t have to attach the name Videodrome to it.  It’s not like the name “Videodrome” will draw a mainstream audience.  The only people it will draw are the people who don’t want to see a remake of Videodrome.  For Kruger and Berg to name their movie “Videodrome” simply comes off as ill-conceived at best and parasitic at worst.

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  • oaktreeradar

    Right on

  • Goop

    This is… frustrating. Like you said, the old Videodrome will always be there so I’ll always enjoy it, but this is beyond missing the point. This sounds like the kind of dangerous content Videodrome warns us about.

  • Chris

    Agreed. Videodrome is still “modern” enough and even feels more relevant as the media landscape evolves. It doesn’t need f’ing nano technology to be fresh.

    Long live the new flesh.

  • Chris

    Agreed. Videodrome is still \"modern\" enough and even feels more relevant as the media landscape evolves. It doesn\’t need f\’ing nano technology to be fresh.

    Long live the new flesh.

  • Reijanrobo

    This is your best non-review M.G. You made all the right points and I am right there with you.

  • Reijanrobo

    This is your best non-review, M.G. You made all the right points and I am right there with you.

  • Timmy

    I can’t help thinking David Cronenberg is somehow from the distant future with a tagline like that for the film and the reality of the American TV generation 30 years on. He was trying to warn us and we wouldn’t listen!

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  • Paul

    Seriously, fuck the new flesh.

    Hopefully Colin Farell won’t agree to stare in this unnecessary remake as well. I’m actually surprised the “writers” behind this haven’t changed the title to DIGITALDRONE, DIGIDRONE, or INSTADRONE to make it “more modern” since Videotape is a thing of the past.

    Whatever. Cronenberg is thankfully still making movies & this can go to a RedBox when no one sees it.

    • Joseph

      …or iDrone…*shudders*

      I’m sure we’ll see a “viral” marketing campaign as well as a trailer that uses the *bwoooom* from Inception….

  • JackofSpades

    This is one of the most misguided creative approaches for a remake ever. As you said, it shouldn’t even be a remake – it should be a stand alone movie.

  • Joseph M

    Well said. And can I risk ridicule by saying the planned remake of Poltergeist is also a bad idea. Like Star Wars, it is a perfect film of its time.

  • joeblow

    I completely agree, Goldberg.
    I deny the notion of some modernist idiots who say “Why do you care if something is remade? The original is still there for you to watch.” Unfortunately, when a terrible remade version of a previous film, especially a brilliant film like Videodrome, is made, younger viewers will not seek out the original version and will reject the watered-down message of the shit version.

  • wacko3205

    I’m shocked shitless that they have the nerve to remake a Cron flick…especially this one.

    How you gonna call this VideoDrome when its got nothing to do with VideoDrome?

    Why not call it NanoDrome? Why not NanoScape or Nanobotomy or Nanoslave or something?

    Agree with you on this one Goldie…terrible idea.

  • Andres

    REMAKE? VIDEODROME? WHY?????? TRANSFORMERS 3 WRITER?!!!!!!!!!!!!!AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA (Commits Seppuku)

  • ScaredForMovies

    Have fun with this one boys. I’m sure you’ll churn out a masterpiece that also makes money. Finally I’m on the same page with Goldberg’s cynicism. Maybe the world is going to end in 2012.

  • Jesus

    Protagonist. Protagonist. Protagonist. Protagonist, yeah?

  • Dobby

    Ooh a pg 13 version please. And make it 3D too.

    Can someone get Ron Meyer and Jeff Rubinov to get on a plane and go somewhere very far away please?

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