Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|The Fog |
Actors: Tom Welling, Maggie Grace, Selma Blair, DeRay Davis, Kenneth Welsh
Director: Rupert Wainwright
Genres: Action & Adventure, Horror, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Mystery & Suspense
A THICK FOG ENSHROUDS A COASTAL TOWN. THE FOG IS REMINISCENT OF ONE 100 YEARS EARLIER THAT WRECKED A SHIP & DROWNED THE SEAMENABOARD. SURE ENOUGH, THE SAILORS ARE BACK & OUT TO KILL WHOMEVER THEY FIND.
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Just plain bad
N. Durham | Philadelphia, PA | 01/07/2006
(1 out of 5 stars)
"Of all the horror remakes over the past few years, I honestly thought that no one would ever dare to remake John Carpenter's the Fog. The original Fog, which starred Adrianne Barbeau, Jamie Lee Curtis, Janet Leigh, and Hal Holbrook, failed at the box office but was regarded as a cult classic and one of Carpenter's best thanks to the ultra eerie atmosphere and sense of dread. This remake, directed by Stigmata director Rupert Wainwright, is not only beyond bad, it's abysmal. The eerie atmosphere and sense of dread are replaced with attractive stars (Smallville's Tom Welling and Lost's Maggie Grace, along with Selma Blair in Barbeau's role) to go with an incomprehensible storyline that has little to do with that of the original, and an ending that isn't just mind boggling and non-sensical, it's just plain ridiculous. I never thought that a cult classic like Carpenter's original Fog would ever be remade as a PG-13 crud-fest like this, but I shouldn't be surprised at all these days. All in all, if you're a fan of the original film, then you already know to avoid this like the plague, because no matter how "Unrated" it can be, it can't come close to being scary or as good as the original."
"What kind of fog goes against the wind? "
cookieman108 | Inside the jar... | 01/23/2006
(2 out of 5 stars)
"I've since come to accept Hollywood's re-cycling tendencies, whether it's schlepping out remake after stinking remake, or turning any halfway decent 1970s television series in to a big budget flops no one wants to see. I've consigned myself to the notion that originality really isn't a viable commodity in tinsletown, and hasn't been for a while. Despite this understanding, I still find myself resentful when someone takes an extremely solid past production, dissembles it, forgets how to put it back together, slaps a `hip', MTV spin on it, ultimately turning it into a barely watchable, incoherent exercise of ineptitude as was done with The Fog (2005), a remake of a John Carpenter film release some 25 years earlier. This new version, written by Cooper Layne (The Core), and directed by Rupert Wainwright (Stigmata), stars Tom Welling ("Smallville"), Maggie Grace ("Lost"), and Selma Blair (Storytelling, Legally Blonde, Hellboy). Also appearing is DeRay Davis (Barbershop, Scary Movie 4), Kenneth Welsh (The Day After Tomorrow, The Exorcism of Emily Rose), Adrian Hough (In the Land of Women), Sara Botsford (Tremors 4: The Legend Begins), and Rade Serbedzija (The Saint, Mission: Impossible II), whom I best remember as the character Boris 'The Blade', from the film Snatch (2000).
As the movie opens we're on an old timey sailing ship (a clipper), and a fire breaks out, as an lamp full of oil is dropped. Amongst the flaming mayhem, four men escape via a rowboat, but not all make it to shore...fast forward to the present (I'm pretty sure it's the present, given the lousy rock music) and we meet various inhabitants of Antonio Island, which, by the way, is gearing up for some sort of founder's day celebration. There's hunky charter boat captain Nick Castle (Welling) and his extremely annoying partner Spooner (Davis), local radio DJ Stevie Wayne (Blair), who operates out of the local lighthouse, and Elizabeth Williams (Grace), who's just recently returned to town under the guise of 19th century male street urchin, which, seems to appeal to Nick as he picks her up hitchhiking and takes her to his place for a little vertical boogie in the shower (apparently the two have a past history, or else she's just really easy). We're about thirty minutes into the movie now and I'm wondering when the actual story is going to begin...so far we've seen a series of minor events, but nothing really conclusive...we did get to see both female leads in their underwear, for what its worth, Grace sporting an attractive light blue ensemble, while Blair favors black (you know what they say about women and black underwear...I'd be all over that if she didn't have a kid almost as old she is) ...eventually the fog does come rolling in with whatever bad vibes it contains, and we learn the founding fathers, all of whom the main characters are descendants, did something really bad a long time ago, something to which now the ghosts of the past are coming up from their watery graves threatening `Blood for blood', which was odd to me because there was no blood whatsoever in the entire film...oh well.
All right, I think it's important for me to preface this by stating I'm a big fan of the original film, so I was a wary, but optimistic, when I heard a remake was in the works. I didn't think it would be as good as the original, but then also I didn't think it would suck eggs as much or thoroughly as it did...Rupert Wainwright, the director, who got his start making music videos for such artists as M.C. Hammer and N.W.A. and writer Cooper Layne, whose only other main film credit is for the insufferable science fiction disaster film (meaning it was a disaster of a film) The Core (2003), which he wrote and produced (had I known Layne was involved, I would have passed this feature by), show how to take a decent, spooky little film, made a quarter of a century ago, and wrench all the goodness out of it, leaving behind a celluloid husk of flotsam that ran eleven minutes longer than the original, but featured less, actual story. Seriously, the only thing missing from this non-frightening ghost story was Scooby Doo and the gang. It's pretty sad when the most interesting character in the movie is the special effects, in this case, the fog, as the real characters were so vacuous, transparent, and without distinction as to barely even register on the screen, much less make me concerned for their well being (I only assumed who the main characters were based on their extensive screen time, and not due to any perception of importance to the story). The direction, in general, features a lot of strong shots, but in terms of tying them all together, Wainwright didn't do so hot, as the various scenes felt slapped together with little, or no regard, for transition. As far as the plot goes, there were many holes, some small, some quite large, but none worth mentioning given the overall lack of cohesion in the story. The one aspect that really made me nuts was the character of Spooner, the homeboy fisherman, who had what I consider to be the absolute worst line in the film as he's talking to Welling's character about women and relationships...'Women have testicle telepathy, man.' What an idiotic, meaningless statement, obviously written by someone of an older generation thinking he has a handle on how the cool, hipper, younger generation speaks, but doesn't...hey, I don't either, but I don't delude myself into thinking I do...anyway, back to Spooner...why, oh why, was this character allowed to survive? If anyone warranted a gruesome, miserable, painful death, it was he. At one point he appeared to have been killed, which wasn't very satisfying as it could have been specifically because we didn't witness his demise (it was inferred), but I was partially satiated given the knowledge we wouldn't have to suffer anymore of his idiotic buffoonery. But in a cruel licorice, twist of fate the movie gods, being the fickle lot they are, saw fit to save this tool of a character (in a completely ridiculous manner), perhaps out of pure spite, I do not know, but to be cheated out of the meager satisfaction resultant of the death of this worthless, irritating and completely pointless secondary character was the supreme letdown...or, at least I thought so, until we got to the end of the movie...what in the hell was that about? I'm not going to give it away, but it just seemed to me not to make much sense, especially given the vengeful nature of the spirits. The special effects were decent (I prefer the low tech effects from the original film over the CGI work here), along with the original scoring, but neither came remotely close to making up for what was lacking, which was just about everything else.
The picture, presented here in widescreen anamorphic (2.35:1), does look sharp and clean, and the Dolby Digital 5.1 audio comes through very clearly. There are some extras included, the main being a commentary by track Rupert Wainwright, who, I got the impression, didn't care for the finished product very much (join the club). Also included are three pointless featurettes (I love the one with the cast interviews, as they all gush about each other and talk about how great the others are to work with...I guess sincerity, along with originality, are not popular traits in the movie biz). Also thrown in are seven deleted scenes, with optional director's commentary, and a whole slew of previews for unrelated films like The Da Vinci Code (2006), Underworld Evolution (2006), The Legend of Zorro (2005), Memoirs of a Geisha (2005), The Pink Panther (2006), Monster House (2006), Rent (2005), Zathura (2005), Underworld Deluxe Edition DVD, The Exorcism of Emily Rose (2005), and The Cave (2005).
By the way, there is a saying which has served me well over the years, one which I think applies here...if it ain't broke, don't fix it...
A missed opportunity to recreate a classic.
Cryptic Critic "Kevin" | Central Florida, United States | 01/30/2006
(2 out of 5 stars)
"I am a fan of the original version of "The Fog" and of John Carpenter's work in general. When I first learned about this remake back in the fall of 2004, I groaned. Why would anyone want to redo a film less than thirty years old or a film whose original director is still alive for that matter? As I read the news snippets that were posted at various websites, I felt there was some hope for this unnecessary update. The saving grace factor being the late Debra Hill and Carpenter himself were set to produce. I later found out that Carpenter was a producer by name only. Hill would succumb to cancer before production began. All hope seemed to be lost. Then casting news started rolling in. Tom Welling, Maggie Grace and Selma Blair all signed on as the three leads. Why they felt the need to cut the ages of all the central characters in half is beyond me. I kept debating on whether or not I should even see the remake when it came out. Then the trailer debuted on the internet. I saw it and it looked very good. Appearances are deceiving.
For those of you who have not seen the 1979 original or this 2005 retelling, here is a rundown of the plot:
In the late 1800s the four founding fathers of the small Oregon town (originally California) of Antonio Bay made a deal with a group of rich lepers to allow them to purchase half the island as their new home. The founding fathers double cross them. The four of them board the clippership the lepers are traveling on in the dead of night and begin robbing them of all their money and possessions. The ship is set ablaze as the four men escape while every man, woman and child on board perishes. Flash forward 130 years or so to present day where the local historical society has erected a statue in honor of the men who made it possible for Antonio Bay to grow from a settlement into a prosperous, thriving township. Apparently the dead lepers have other ideas, because they return from their water grave and start offing all the oldest living descendants (and anyone else who gets in the way) of those responsible for their demise.
For the most part, the story is cut and paste from the original. There are slight changes to the back stories to all the characters. They were written to be the descendants of the conspirators. While this was an interesting take on the prologue, it was never really fully explored. There was also a really ridiculous and ludicrous plot twist which inlvolved one of the leads turning out to be the reincarnated spirit of the head leper's spouse. What the hell were they thinking?
Casting was a problem in and of itself. Why the filmmakers felt the need to cut the ages of the centrals characters in half is beyond me. Tom Atkins was perfectly in his element as Nick Castle in the original. Tom Welling brought nothing to the story in his portrayal of the character (I would have approached Kurt Russel for the part). At first glance, Maggie Grace seemed like an adequate casting choice for the role of Elizabeth Williams (it was Elizabeth Solley in the original). After seeing a few episodes of "Lost" I wondered why they casted her, because her acting is very flat and mechanical. She didn't impress me at all in the movie, either (I think Eliza Dushku or Jessica Biel would have been better). Selma Blair did what she could with what she was given. I just had a hard time seeing her as the mother of a 12-year-old even though she was 33 when they were shooting the film. She is very youthful looking...which is exactly what the filmmakers were looking for. I would have gone with someone who in very least LOOKED old enough to have a child that age. Charisma Carpenter or Laura Dern, for example. Blair also didn't have the sultry speaking voice that Adrienne Barbeau does. In hearing her voice over in the original, I felt like I was listening to a real DJ. Blair didn't capture that like Barbeau did. It could have been worse: Fergie from The Black Eyed Peas was intially cast as Stevie Wayne, but left because the filmmakers would not give her top billing.
The supporting cast was slightly better. Sara Botsford updated the role of Kathy Williams (who was written to be Elizabeth's bitch mother in this version) originally played by the late great Janet Leigh. She played it well, but her involvement with the other characters was changed drastically from the way she was written in the original. Botsford did a good job. I found her diction to be a bit off, though. In one scene, she is reading the names on the monument, she seems to have a slight British accent. I thought she was Canadian. Whatever, go figure. Adrian Hough did a respectable job as Father Malone, but did not quite surpass the horror Hal Holbrook exuded knowing he is the descendant of a thief and murderer. Spooner, the new and unneeded token black character was just plain annoying and completely out of place. I really wish one of the lepers had skewered him with a sicle.
The ending of the film was a complete and total insult to my intelligence and everyone else who saw it. Why did they have to change the story so much? This remake is nothing more than a prime example of a wasted oppotunity to retell a classic in a fresh way. The script was horrible, the acting was wooden and the visual effects were garbage. The only nice thing I can think of to say about "The Fog" (2005) is the cinematography is top notch.
John Carpenter was approached and asked his opinion of this recycling of his cult classic. His response: "No comment." He must be kicking himself for allowing this remake to happen. Debra Hill is probably turning over in her grave. It would be just desserts if she came back to haunt Carpenter and slap him on the back of his head for not having actively produced this feature. Had he done so, he might have been able to save this train wreck from occuring.
Then again, that's just wishful thinking."
Cryptic Critic "Kevin" | 01/22/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This movie is a pretty good remake. I love the old errie town. Its true this movie is not The shining, but I think it is worth your renting money. I went to the theater and saw this movie. I really didn't get scared but I love the town and scenary. If you want to see a good movie, rent this today!"