Chris Rock signs on to remake a year-old English-language movie

Okay, usually I’m quick to take the atypical (for a movie snob) position of defending the idea of remakes, because I know that they’re not always bad. In fact, some — such as The Departed — have been, arguably, better than their originals.

But Variety has just reported that Chris Rock has signed on to star and co-write an urban, American remake of the 2007 UK comedy, Death at a Funeral, and honestly? The only reaction I have is… “What the fuck?”

Posted on November 7, 2008 at 15:31 by Gordon@MovieMakeout · Permalink
In: News

12 Responses

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  1. Written by causticsoda
    on 2008-11-07 at 18:49
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    i agree… wtf?

  2. Written by Lori
    on 2008-11-07 at 19:56
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    I blog the absurd things that come my way — this is definitely blogworthy…

    ARGH!!

  3. Written by Lethal Interjection
    on 2008-11-08 at 00:14
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    That is awful.
    On the other hand, somehow the original has somehow not come to my attention. How sad.
    But I love Alan Tudyk and Ewen Bremner is fun. Plus it looks like it is pretty much a one-set, nearly real-time movie (unless I am mistaken) and I always find those terribly interesting.

  4. Written by Kat
    on 2008-11-08 at 11:23
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    I concur with the others: WTF? This is never going to work. It’s going to epically bomb and ruin the British one while it’s at it. -runs off to find copy while there’s still time-

  5. Written by BJ
    on 2008-11-08 at 21:16
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    Well, at least its not a remake like the Departed where it has literally been done before. I think language is such a superficial thing to change, whereas this will actually be taken out of the original setting, which relies a lot on the British way of dealing with things, and move it to an urban setting where peoples reactions are not portrayed in the same way. This is going to be completely different, and is going to be for a completely different audience. Also, when has a remake ever ruined the original, all it will do is bring new viewers to the original. The worst case scenario is that this version becomes the definitive version to the people who have only seen this version, like with the departed, and were those people eve going to see the original anyway? Who is really losing here, especially if the movie is good or at least satisfies its audience. Personally I think it is more admirable to tweak the concept and retell the base story than to do a shot for shot remake just changing the language, actors, and city.

  6. Written by Gordon
    on 2008-11-09 at 10:44
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    BJ: I agree that no remake has ever ruined the original, although sometimes they replace the original in the public’s mind. (I’m never really one to care what the public supposedly thinks, though.)

    As for The Departed, I have seen Infernal Affairs (only the first one), and I think Departed is the better movie. The slickness of the original is a huge turn-off to me. The cast, though great, just looks like a bunch of posers. I just prefer the grittier style of the Departed — but I can see why other people feel exactly the opposite about the two films.

  7. Written by Agent M
    on 2008-11-09 at 20:42
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    wow this is a new low for Cris rock. The original was so good what dose he possibly hope to achieve.

  8. Written by Tsiwt
    on 2008-11-10 at 19:45
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    I guess just because this comedy deals with extreme family drama, drug dealing, and the family dealing with the death of the father (all in a somewhat comic way), this just screams urban comedy? I swear, that Chris Rock guy and his black stereotypes …

    I have to say that after watching Rock’s recent comedy special on HBO, I have very low expectiations of him. It was filled with obvious stereotypes of the races and sexes, including homosexuals and … not much more.

  9. Written by Damien Walder
    on 2008-11-10 at 21:22
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    Meh. This film (UK version) probably can’t be saved. It settled in for an evening of mediocrity and too many jokes reliant on manners and class, too many acting and directing choices that were telegraphed 2 or 3 scenes ahead of execution. When you know a line is coming, it has to be delivered well, or it will fall on its face.
    Real title? Jokes Die at a Funeral, or
    You CAN have a Funeral Without “FUN”!

    See PASSED AWAY, for an earlier, gentler and funnier film with the same basic character cast. With Bob Hoskins and Peter Reigert!

  10. Written by Sabine Griffin
    on 2008-11-11 at 13:55
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    Death at a Funeral is a sick movie. Just hysterical.

    buuut…

    Like all good British things that come our way, America feels the need to rip them off, making them five times shittier, and screwing over the British version. Ah!

    Plus, Chris Rock + sarcastic British humor = FAIL

  11. Written by MaskedVigilante
    on 2008-11-13 at 16:34
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    I can’t handle these remakes of foreign films anymore.

    When you sit and think about all the great, original scripts that could be out there while Hollywood thinks we need another Conan movie, a Beverly Hills Cop sequel, and a remake of The Birds…

    And I couldn’t get through Chris Rock’s special either.

  12. Written by Gordon
    on 2008-11-13 at 19:55
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    It’s not even really all that foreign! It was directed by Frank Oz. YODA.

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