What’s the point of remaking a movie for American audiences? That’s often a big question when it comes to English-language remakes, and for good reason. More often than that, we end up getting lifeless regurgitations of the original story, only without the spirit of what made the original foreign-language film so engaging in the first place. This was the case with the Oldboy remake and is often also the case with TV show remakes.
But sometimes, the filmmakers are really able to look critically at the source film and actually decide on a powerful direction away from said material. This seems to be the case with Catherine Hardwicke’s upcoming thriller Miss Bala. The film stars Jane the Virgin‘s Gina Rodriguez and is based on the Mexican film of the same name. While Hardwicke was very respectful of that first movie, there was one aspect of it she felt like she could correct in the new remake, as she revealed to LRM Online:
“I thought the original film was really cool, and the cinematography, awesome, but the character was very passive. You’re sitting there on the screen, watching, screaming, ‘Don’t let him do that! Hit him! Kick him!’ So our hero is much more active and she’s clever and figures out what to do.”
I admittedly haven’t seen the original film, but from a general storytelling perspective, she’s not wrong. Oftentimes, in an effort to make things more grounded and realistic, there is a tendency to let our lead characters get thrown around like rag doll with very little agency.
It would be interesting to actually visit that original film from that perspective and to compare just how different it is in terms of what problems it actually allows its characters to solve. After all, it is much easier to root for a protagonist that isn’t just a wet towel on screen, but what do you think? Do you think that original movie suffered from a passive protagonist? Let us know your thoughts down below!
And keep an eye out for our full interview with Catherine Hardwicke later this week!
Miss Bala hits theaters on February 1, 2019.
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