Category Archives: Original vs Remake

Original vs Remake: ‘The Evil Dead’ (1981) vs ‘Evil Dead’ (2013)

cooltext1205611622Evil-Dead-1981-Poster-e1367277196109This edition of “Original vs Remake” is going to be a different one.  I have never onesheetcompared films that were produced by the same people.  I know a lot of people were pissed about this because they thought that Bruce Campbell was being replaced.  What a few people fail to understand is that Bruce Campbell was in fact involved in this picture.  He was a producer on the film and he also had a cameo at the end of the credits with his iconic line “Groovy“.

There are a lot more differences than similarities between the 1981 original and the 2013 re-imagining.  Yes I am calling this a re-imagining not a remake.  The first and most obvious difference is the name of the film.  In 1981, the film was titled ‘The Evil Dead‘, but in 2013, they dropped the “the” and just called it ‘Evil Dead‘.  That is the biggest reason I am calling the 2013 film a re-imagining.

The opening scenes of the films are also drastically different from one another.  ‘The Evil Dead‘ (1981) opened with the group driving to the cabin, whereas ‘Evil Dead‘ opened with a much more intense scene of what happened to the people that were previously at the cabin.  The first major similarity of course is in fact the cabin.  The reasoning for going to the cabin was much different in each movie however.  In 1981, the group was just out for a weekend of fun.  In the new adaptation, the group was there to help the main character, Mia (Jane Levy), get over her drug addiction.

The biggest difference that most people noticed was the absence of Ash (Bruce Campbell).  In 2013’s ‘Evil Dead‘, there were two characters similar to Ash, Mia and her brother David (Shiloh Fernandez).  David starts out in the film as an Ash-like character, with his sister being the first to be possessed, but by the end of the film, Mia is more like Ash.

Once in the cabin in the 1981 original, attention is drawn to the cellar because the door slams open, but in the re-imagining, it is the dog and a foul smell that brings the attention to the cellar.  What is found in the cellar is also different in both films.  In the new adaption, the group finds dead animals hanging from the ceiling, a much more grotesque discovery than that of the gourds hanging in the original.  The biggest similarity in the two films is of course what is found in the cellar, The Book of the Dead.  Although The Book of the Dead was found in the cellar in both films, the condition it is found in is different in both films.  In ‘The Evil Dead‘, the book is not bound by anything, it is just laying there, but in ‘Evil Dead‘, the book is bound in a trash bag and barbed wire.  There are also differences in the appearance of the book.  In the original, the book has a face, but in the re-imagining, the book has just a stitched together cover.

Obviously it is The Book of the Dead that is tied to the demons and the possessions, but how the demons are drawn in in the films are different from one another.  In the original, the group plays a tape that they find in the cellar and that draws them in.  In the 2013 version, one of the members of the group read from the book while Mia is outside.  A female is the first victim of possession in both films.  Another similarity is the movement of the cameras through the woods.  The way the first victim is possessed is similar as well.  In 1981, the first victim is wondering around the woods trying to find a way home.  In 2013, Mia is possessed after she sees a girl standing in the woods and she follows her in.  The possession happens after the first victim is held by some vines and basically raped, this scene is more violent in the original than in the re-imagining.

Once possessed, in the original, Cheryl (Ellen Sandweiss), Ash’s sister, she doesn’t do as much extreme stuff as Mia before revealing to the rest of the group that she is possessed.  The first character possessed in both films is also the leading man’s sister.  Although, the first possessed in the original is a supporting character, and the first possessed in the new version turns out to be the main character.  Once locked in the cellar, both Cheryl and Mia say the same “We’re gonna get you” chant.  The makeup for the possessed is much more extreme in the original than in the remake.  They seem to retain more of their human qualities than they do in the original.  The same white mucus/vomit comes from the mouth of the possessed in both films.  More of the same lines are used in both films such as “one by one we will take you” and “You’re all going to die tonight“.

The endings of both films are very different from one another.  “The abomination” that is named in the 2013 film is not talked about in the original.  Ash burns the book to bring it to an end.  Mia’s brother David buries her to “purify” her and she comes out of it.  The cabin was burnt down in the new vision whereas in the original, only the book was set on fire.  There is only one survivor in both films, Ash in the original and Mia in the new take.  The original ending is much more open than the new one.  Perhaps the biggest difference in the endings of both films has to be Mia losing her hand battling “the abomination“.  We all know that Ash does not lose his hand until ‘Army of Darkness‘.

In the battle of ‘The Evil Dead‘ and ‘Evil Dead‘, I am calling a draw.  Both films are amazing in their own ways.  ‘The Evil Dead‘ of course is a classic, but I believe that the new vision has all the makings of becoming a classic itself.  Bruce Campbell was nothing short of legendary in the original, but the performance by Jane Levy in ‘Evil Dead‘ was about as close as anyone will get to Bruce’s in the original.  I think it would be incredible to see both Jane and Bruce come together in a new film, perhaps a new ‘Army of Darkness‘?  The team of Mia and Ash would be incredible.  I know a lot of you will disagree with me, but I simply could not definitively choose between the two.  They were essentially different films and both deserve the highest recognition either of them could get.

1981 ‘The Evil Dead‘ trailer:

2013 ‘Evil Dead‘ trailer:

Original vs Remake: Halloween II (1981) vs Halloween II (2009)

cooltext1205611622basMKhaMi2tjIL2EghSKrHi3AoaWith Halloween being tomorrow and having previously done the 1978 ‘Halloween‘ vs the 2007 495228.1020.AHalloween‘, I figured it appropriate to compare the original 1981 ‘Halloween II‘ to the 2009 re-imagining of ‘Halloween II‘.  There are way more differences between the sequels to ‘Halloween‘ than similarities.

The openings of both films are vastly different.  In the John Carpenter’s 1981 ‘Halloween II‘, the film opens with Michael walking through an alley.  While he walks through the alley, Michael continues his killing spree with Sheriff Brackett and Dr. Loomis still looking for him.  In Rob Zombie’s 2009 re-imaging of ‘Halloween II‘, the film opens with Michael talking to his dead mother, then flashes to Laurie walking down a deserted street and she is then picked up by Sheriff Brackett.  In the original ‘Halloween II‘, Michael immediately continues his hunt for Laurie whereas in the 2009 version, Michael is loaded into the back of the coroner’s van and hauled off.

The role of Michael Myers in the 1981 ‘Halloween II‘ was played by a different actor than the one that played him in the 1978 ‘Halloween‘.  In 1978, he was played by Tony Moran, but Moran was replaced by Dick Warlock in 1981. Rob Zombie kept Tyler Mane on from his 2007 adaption of ‘Halloween‘.  The 2009 mask was also much more menacing.

The role of Laurie Strode was however kept consistent in both films.  John Carpenter brought back Jamie Lee Curtis and Rob Zombie brought back Scout Taylor-Compton.  The main difference in this role in both versions of the film is the level of injuries that Laurie sustained at the hands of her psychotic brother.  Laurie was much more banged up in the 2009 version than she was in 1981.  Which brings us to the hospital.  In both films, the hospital seems strangely deserted.  Is it just me or do the nurses seem to magically disappear and the security guards seem to fall asleep or take a bathroom break at the perfect time when Michael is walking past a camera?  In the 1981 version, the majority of the film takes place in the hospital whereas the 2009 film is more focused on Laurie’s life a year after the attack.  As a matter of fact, the hospital sequence in 2009 was a nightmare that Laurie was having and not actually happening.

Another big difference is where Michael is located in the films.  In John Carpenter’s original, he is never caught and continues his hunt for Laurie.  In Rob Zombie’s version, as previously mentioned, he is loaded in a coroner’s van and hauled off.  Michael eventually escapes and begins his long journey back to Haddonfield.  We actually get to see Michael without his mask.  The main focus of Michael is also very different in both versions of the film.  In 1981, Michael is still hellbent on killing his sister.  In 2009, Michael wants to show Laurie that she is his sister and he wants to bring her home and reunite his family.

There is a huge difference in the character of Dr. Samuel Loomis.  Donald Pleasence and Malcolm McDowell both return in ‘Halloween II‘ to play the iconic role.  Loomis continues to be the creepy good guy in 1981.  In 2009 however, Loomis becomes an egocentric jerk and becomes kind of a villain.  I personally like the changes that Rob Zombie made to the character of Loomis.  He writes a book exposing Michael’s family and childhood also revealing that Laurie is actually Angel Myers, Michael’s baby sister.  I also loved the nod at ‘A Clockwork Orange‘ in the 2009 ‘Halloween II‘ when Loomis was giving a speech to the press defending his new book.  He says “Let me make things nice and sparkling clear” which was also a line spoken by Alex in the 1971 classic.  In 1981, Loomis speaks more of supernatural forces controlling Michael whereas in 2009, Loomis makes Michael out to just be an unstoppable psychopath.

One of the biggest differences in the return of Annie Brackett in 2009.  In the original series, Annie dies in the first ‘Halloween‘ film, but Danielle Harris returned in the re-imagining as the ballsy Annie Brackett.  Unfortunately, Annie does eventually meet her demise when Michael makes his return to Haddonfield and finds out that Laurie is living with the Bracketts.

Rob Zombie had it right in his evolution of Laurie.  I mean come on, having an experience as crazy as that is bound to mess you up.  In 2009, Laurie becomes more hard and slightly crazy.  She has horrible nightmares.  I love that Laurie’s nightmares seem to link her to Michael and she seems to begin to see what he sees and she begins to feel his emotions.  I thought this was kind of a nice salute to the connection that Jamie Lloyd and Michael Myers shared in ‘Halloween 4‘ and ‘Halloween 5‘.  Laurie finds out in 2009 that she is Michael’s sister, but in 1981 she had no idea.

I loved Michael’s hallucinations in the 2009 re-imagining.  I feel like it gave more depth to the mind of Michael Myers and what drives him to do what he does.  I also liked that they eventually had Laurie begin to share in these hallucinations when she was in close proximity with Michael.

Another honorable mention for Rob Zombie’sHalloween II‘ are the cameos he had.  As a fan of ‘Sons of Anarchy‘, I quickly recognized Dayton Callie (Unser) and Mark Boone Jr. (Bobby).  Sadly though they both become victims of Michael and are not with us very long.

The endings of both films are complete day and night to one another.  In 1981’s ‘Halloween II‘, Loomis and Laurie blind Michael, while still stuck in the hospital, and Loomis blows up the room while he and Michael are still trapped inside of it.  Loomis is then presumed dead while Michael of course makes an escape.  The ending was kind of a snorefest.  The 2009 ‘Halloween II‘ ending however was much more exciting.  Michael brings Laurie to an old shack on the side of the road.  Laurie begins to hallucinate young Michael and their dead mother.  The police surround the shack and instead of Michael coming out, Laurie dawns the mask and sort of transforms into her brother.  The police shoot Laurie, but she does not die.  The very closing of the film, we see Laurie in a mental hospital and she again sees her mother and gives a wicked smile opening a door to the thought that we may see Laurie take Michael’s place as the resident loony with a stabbing fetish.

In this ‘Halloween II‘ edition of Original vs Remake, I am going to have to go with the 2009 re-imagining.  The whole basis of the film was more exciting than the original.  Don’t get me wrong, I still love the 1981 classic, but when a film is essentially an hour and a half of running around a hospital it tends to get a bit boring.  I will rarely pick a remake or re-imagining over an original, but Rob Zombie really gave ‘Halloween II‘ a much needed face lift and gave new life to such a fantastic franchise.


Original vs Remake: Halloween (1978) vs Halloween (2007)

cooltext1205611622halloween-movie-poster-1020189584John Carpenter’s 1978 classic Halloween has been one of the most viewed and talked about horror hh2films in the history of the genre.  As a matter of fact, it was the first horror movie I saw.  In 2007, John Carpenter’s classic got a reboot from the disturbed mind of Rob Zombie.  Being a fan of the original Halloween and Rob Zombie, of course I went to see it and of course I had to add the film to my collection.  Anytime a remake or reboot comes about, the first thing anyone does is compare the film to the original.  I decided to sit down and watch both the original and the reboot back to back and add Halloween to my Original vs Remake series.

LaurieStrode_-_Curtis_&_Taylor-ComptonThe first comparison I made was the role of Laurie Strode, the sister and main target of Michael Myers.  In 1978 the amazing Jamie Lee Curtis put on her innocent face to grace the screen as he damsel in distress turned badass heroine.  Jamie Lee Curtis could never be topped in the role of Laurie Strode.  In the 2007 reboot,  an actress new to the scene, Scout Taylor-Compton was cast as Laurie.  In 1978, Laurie was much more reserved and timid whereas in 2007 she was more outgoing and not nearly as standoffish.  Both films portray Laurie as the more innocent one of her group of friends.  Scout did an incredible job resurrecting the iconic role, but she did not sell it as well as Jamie Lee.

The next most vital role is obviously Michael Myers.  In 1978 Tony Moran played the masked Tyler Mane as Michael Myers in Halloweenpsycho and in 2007 the very large, intimidating Tyler Mane reprized the role.  Tony Moran was of course amazing, but Tyler Mane’s Michael was much more menacing.  Tyler was larger and his movements were much more brutal.  Michael’s kills in the 2007 Halloween were much more gruesome than those in the 1978 Michael_Myersfilm.  In the battle of Michaels, I am going to have to give it to Tyler Mane.  

The most iconic image from the Halloween franchise is without a doubt, Michael’s white mask.  The masks are drastically different in both films.  The 1978 mask was not very detailed and seemed to be very loose fitting and it did not have many human characteristics.  In 2007, Michael’s mask was much more defined and tighter fitting.  You could tell that there was a human face behind the mask.  In the battle of the masks, I would have to say that Tyler Mane’s mask in the 2007 Halloween wins this one.  Michael’s face does not seem as blank and I love that he has more human qualities to his face.

225px-SamuelLoomis_-_Pleasence_&_McDowellOf course Halloween would not be the same without Dr. Samuel Loomis, Michael’s doctor.  Both the original and the remake had icons playing this role.  In 1978, Donald Pleasence played the role and in 2007, Malcolm McDowell dawned the tan trench coat and pursued Michael around Haddonfield.  The role in both films, in my opinion, is kind of a creepy one.  Loomis is a very complex character, he’s a good guy, yet he’s very conflicted.  Both Pleasence and McDowell did an incredible job in the role, and it is almost impossible for me to choose which one I liked more as Loomis.  So, when it comes to this role, I’m calling it a draw.

Now to compare the contents of the films.  Both films have the same characters and the same basic concept.  One thing that I did like more about the 2007 reboot was that we got to see more into the mind and life of young Michael Myers.  Being able to see more into Michael’s past makes him easier to understand and much more a sympathetic character.  In the 1978 classic, we only see young Michael when he dawns the mask and kills Judith, but in 2007, his rampage is much more brutal and his body count is much higher.  It was great to see the hell he went through at home and at school that makes him snap.  It gave the film much more depth and more of a story to build on.  In John Carpenter’s Halloween, we are not quite sure what happens to Michael’s parents, but in 2007, we see that he kills his step-father/mother’s boyfriend and that his mother kills herself after a very traumatizing visit to see Michael in Smithsgrove.

In the 1978 film, Michael moves more like a mindless killing machine, which I guess would kind of make sense. However, in 2007 Michael moves with more calculation and his actions are much more methodical and thought out.  I like the actions of Michael in Rob Zombie’s Halloween more than his actions in John Carpenter’s film because if you really think about it, he has had 15+ years to think about what he is going to do, so his actions should appear to be more thought out.  In 1978, Michael seems to be on a mission to kill Laurie, but in 2007 he seems to be on more of a mission to bring her home and make her understand that she is his sister.

In 2007, we see Michael kill the Strodes on his destructive path to find his baby sister, but in 1978, we have no clue what happens to them.

hal03-300x154Laurie of course has her group of party girl friends, Lynda and Annie.  In both films, Lynda2_Halloween_071122093758557_wideweb__300x375 and Annie were much more outgoing and sexually driven than Laurie.  In 1978, PJ Soles and Nancy Kyes/Loomis play the mischievous duo.  In 2007, Kristina Klebe plays Lynda and a veteran to the Halloween franchise, Danielle Harris plays Annie. Of the teenagers killed on Halloween night by Michael Myers, one of the most memorable ones is Lynda.  In both 1978 and 2007, Lynda’s iconic death is the same.  Lynda and her boyfriend fooling around in the Myers’ house and when they are finished Lynda has her boyfriend get her a beer.  On his way back he is brutally killed by Michael and Michael then dawns a sheet and her boyfriend’s glasses and enters the room Lynda is in.  After some bitchy lines from Lynda, Michael hands her the beer and then proceeds to strangle Lynda.  I am glad they kept that kill from the original the same.  Annie however has a different fate in both films.  In 1978,  Michael is in the backseat of Annie’s car and when she gets in to go pick up Paul, Michael reaches to the front seat and straggles her.  However, in the 2007 reboot, Paul picks Annie up after she drop Lindsey off to Laurie and they head off for a rendezvous.  While they are messing around on the couch, Michael channels his inner voyeur and watches them for a bit then proceeds to kill Paul.  Annie however tries to run away and Michael catches up to her and stabs her a few times, but Laurie finds Annie still alive laying on the floor.

In both films, Michael finally gets a hold of Laurie and takes her to their childhood home.  In both films, Laurie sees Lynda laying at the foot of Judith’s tombstone in the basement of the Myers‘ house.  In the 1978 film, Annie is also in the basement, dead with Lynda, and we all know that in 2007’s adaptation, Annie survives and is not in the basement with Linda.

Loomis_saves_LaurieThe endings to both films were different yet similar.  They were both very open and left Laurie_shoots_Michaelroom for a sequel.  Both involved Laurie, Michael and a gun.  In the original, Michael finds Laurie in a closet and she stabs him in the eye with a coat hanger then Loomis enters the room and shoots Michael and he falls out the upstairs window.  When they look out the window, Michael is gone.  In the reboot, Laurie tries to shoot Michael but the gun jams then Michael tackles her out the window.  Laurie lands on top of Michael and then she repeatedly tries to shoot him, but the gun does not go off.  Finally, the gun goes off and she shoots Michael in the head.  The movie ends with Laurie sitting on top of Michael screaming.

In this edition on Original vs Remake: Halloween (1978) vs Halloween (2007), I am giving the title to John Carpenter’s 1978 classic Halloween.  Don’t get me wrong, I loved Rob Zombie’s reboot, but when it comes to such an iconic film, nothing tops the classic.


Original vs Remake: A Nightmare on Elm Street


a-nightmare-on-elm-street-originalWith the remake craze taking the horror genre by storm, we all compare the remake to the original A_Nightmare_on_Elm_Street_2010_posterwhile we’re watching it.  This is going to be my first article in a new series I am going to be doing, Original vs Remake.

When the 1984 classicA Nightmare on Elm Street‘ got a remake in 2010, everyone was a buzz and from what I seen there was a split on how people felt about it.   I am not a big fan of remakes, but I give every film that I see a fair chance, so I have seen the remake a few times.

My first concern with a remake of ‘A Nightmare on Elm Street‘ was obviously Freddy Krueger.  What would he look like? Who will be playing him?  Jackie Earle Haley was cast as the iconic villain.  He did a decent job portraying Freddy Krueger, but in my opinion did not quite measure up to Robert Englund.  Robert Englund played the role with so much more passion and he was much more natural.  Robert’s Freddy had a lot more playfulness and was at times funny while Jackie Earle Haley’s Freddy was more menacing and did not have those comedic properties. Robert also had the better voice as Freddy.

Robert_englundPerhaps the biggest change made to the film in the 2010 remake was the makeup.  ‘A Nightmare on jackiehaleyElm Street‘ 2010’s makeup was more accurate to what someone who was severally burnt would look.  My biggest gripe about the makeup was how it fit Jackie’s face.  It appeared to be too tight and did not look like it functioned well.  Where as the 1984 makeup seemed more functional and, in my opinion, more menacing and demonic.  I know that with a remake, the creators like to tweak the look of the main characters a bit, but I did not like that they completely changed the appearance of one of the most recognizable, iconic faces in the horror genre.

A couple more things that Freddy is known for are the red and green striped sweater and the razor glove.  The sweater is pretty much the same in both films, but there are some slight differences in the glove.  The glove is more intricate in the remake, but I still prefer the 1984 glove.

FreddyKruegerIn the 1984 classic, Freddy was more about the psychological attack.  He liked getting into the heads of his victims. The 2010 Freddy was more into physically attacking his victims and making a-nightmare-on-elm-street-13-4-10-kcthem pay for what he did.

In both films, Freddy Krueger preyed upon the children of the parents that killed him.  His favorite target in both was Nancy.  There were some changes to Nancy in 2010.  They changed her last name to Holbrook from Thompson in 1984.  In 1984 Nancy was played by Heather Langenkamp and in 2010, Nancy was played by the talented Rooney Mara.  Heather’s version of Nancy was a little bit more, for a lack of better terms, crazy whereas Rooney’s Nancy was much calmer and a bit of a badass.  The 1984 Nancy Nightmare's_Nancy_-_Langenkamp_&_Maracaught on to Freddy and his game much quicker.  In both films, Nancy finds out who Freddy is and what he did from her mother.  Nancy was the one to stop Freddy in both films, but in the original she did it by herself whereas in 2010, Nancy had help from her “boyfriend’.  Nancy’s dream sequences are much more elaborate in the 1984 original than they are in the remake.

Nancy is not the only target in both, Nancy’s friends are also on Freddy’s “to kill” list.  They changed imagesthe names of the friends and how they were killed.  In 2010 the girl named Kris was killed the same way as Tina in the 1984 film with her boyfriend being the only witness. In both films, the boyfriend is wrongfully accused and locked up only to become a victim of Freddy.

Surprisingly, there is more gore and sex (I guess it’s because sex scenes were the thing in 80’s slasher films) in the original than in the remake.  Tina and her boyfriend engage in what could possibly the loudest, most obnoxious sex scene in the history of horror movies.  There are no sex scenes in the remake.  The kills in the original are much more bloody and intense than they are in the remake.

847One of my favorite lines from the 1984 original, “I’m your boyfriend now“, also appears in both films.  When Freddy says it in the original, it is much more entertaining.  Right a_nightmare_on_elm_streetbefore he kills Nancy’s boyfriend, he calls Nancy and turns the bottom of the phone into his mouth whereas in the remake he says it to Nancy’s face and it’s kind of anticlimactic.

The way that Freddy stalks the teens in the original is way more creative than in the remake.  In the remake, he more or less only stalks them in there dreams, but in the original, he appears in bedrooms as they are falling asleep and they see him in other ways.

Craven_14_13_KelseyR2The story line as a whole was pretty different between the original and the remake.  In the remake, the group of friends went to preschool together, but the parents hid it from them and made them forget about it, so they thought that had met in high school.  Then Nancy finds a photo of all of them together in preschool, so she and Quentin track everyone down only to find out that they are the last two in the picture left alive.  In the original, we are not really told how or when they all met.

The endings were drastically different from each other as well.  The ending of the remake

was not as good as the ending of the original.  In the original, Nancy alone pulls Freddy out of her dream at her house.  In the remake, images (1)Nancy and Quentin pull Freddy out of Nancy’s dream at the preschool they attended.  In the end of both films, Freddy kills Nancy’s mom, but unlike the remake that ended freddy1 kill5abruptly after he kills Nancy’s mom, Nancy’s mom is back and Nancy gets in the car with her friends.  The car is possessed by Freddy, so it gets a little more confusing than the remake.  Both the original (obviously) and the remake were left open for sequels.

I am going to have to say that in the match of A Nightmare on Elm Street 1984 vs A Nightmare on Elm Street 2010 that the original 1984 A Nightmare on Elm Street is the winner with a total KO.

Below are the trailers to both the 1984 and the 2010 A Nightmare on Elm Street.