Well the net and the entertainment industry are all a buzz. It’s official…nothing if safe from the world of remakes franchise revivals. Most people realized this after Star Trek became such a blockbuster success. Heck, G. I. Joe just came out, and that franchise was limited to toys and accompanying DVD’s for well over a decade. Of course, I’d wager that G. I. Joe would prove that some of these ‘revivals’ are can be bad as well as good. I for one am not eager to see it.

Oddly enough there seem to be a lot of 80’s kids shows turned into modern movies for somewhat more mature audiences. Transformers (2007), TMNT (2008), G. I. Joe (2009), before you know it Fraggle Rock is going to show up on the big screen.

Star Trek (2009 ) went back to the original cast of characters from the late 60’s TV show. Barbarella is in the works as we speak.

And now, someone wants to go back even further- the Farrelly Brothers actually want to make a Three Stooges flick.

Now don’t get me wrong- these guys are probably the best guys to do it, based on their track record. But will a brand name  from the black and white era sell in the 21st century? For a while it seemed Sean Penn and Jim Carrey thought so. Penn was rumored to be cast as Moe, I believe, and Jim Carrey was going to play Curly. He stated he was even going to put on weight for the role. Try to imagine Jim Carrey’s persona in Curly’s shoes. While they are both over the top, I can hardly imagine Carrey pulling it off very well. He’s just too set into his own stage personality.

As for Sean Penn, I’m not even sure I’ve seen him in anything remotely resembling a comedy. When I think of Sean Penn, I think of Mystic River (1998) and the Thin Red Line (also 1998). The closest thing to a comedy I have seen him do was Milk, which was still much more a drama than a comedy. Somehow the hardcore drama actor being thrown into the role of Moe doesn’t seem to be very realistic.

Thankfully, the two actors may have reconsidered. they seem to have moved to greener pastures. Meanwhile, another actor has reportedly come onboard- Paul Giamatti. Unlike Penn and Carrey, Paul Giamatti looks like he could make a fair Larry, and his highly laudable acting talent fits the mold fairly well. But with the other two star roles abandoned, who will accompany him on screen?

Curly might seem like a hard shoe to fit, but there are some actors and comedic figures that can physically fit the slapstick bill. Kevin James comes to mind. Perhaps even Larry the Cable Guy, if need be. Both seem to have made a name in pseudo slapstick or otherwise goofy comedy gigs. With a little work, either of them would look the part as well. I think between the two Kevin James is preferable given his adaptability. Larry the Cable Guy is, well, Larry the Cable Guy. Can you really imagine him not being the Larry so many fans have come to know and love?

Moe is a little harder I think. I think that one will be filled by a wildcard type actor. Somehow I imagine Johnny Depp will offer to take up the role. If the opportunity presents itself long enough, he might decide to add it to his long list of oddball roles that others cannot do so well. Of course, the Moe role isn’t too far from George Clooney’s character Everett McGill from O Brother Where Art Thou (2000). I suppose there are several actors that work here, but finding the right one is going to take some serious digging.

And even after all this is settled, is anyone really going to see a movie based on three clownish figures from the early decades of the last century? Inevitably I suppose it must draw a certain Friday night crowd. Any laugh will do after a particularly hard week of work. But is this going to be a kid’s movie, or something more mature? Is it going to be set in modern times? Will that even work? For the sake of nostalgia- and for this kind of movie, you have to inevitably appeal to nostalgia- that they keep the film set in times of the original Larry, Curly and Moe. Otherwise, it will lose all of its charm.

Assuming that there are still moviegoers who remember what that charm was after all these years.

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Well, Watchmen’s competition released its new exciting trailer attached with the Bond flick this month. This is the latest big production by producer/director J.J. Abrams, creator of Cloverfield (2008) and the television series Fringe and Lost. He has had a very successful career in science fiction programs, despite most of his material being somewhat experimental. Most of his work invovles a strange slant on a traditional sci-fi archetype. For example, Cloverfield is like a giant monster movie, but through BlairwitchoVison.

Well, the unusual quirk Star Trek  is that it is a prequel. Apparently, Star Trek is following the same path as Star Wars. The dynamic style gives the Star Trek universe a visual quality the low budget series could not achieve. This film is fairly distinct from its predecessors.

However, unlike Star Wars, this installment of Gene Roddenberry’s classic franchise maintains at least some of the original designs from the 1960’s television series. The ships and outfits are exactly like the uniforms Spock and Captain Kirk wore in the original series. The ships have a modern twist to them, and the Vulcan civilization seems to be heavily influenced by Peter Jackson’s interpretation of the elves in Lord of the Rings. Clearly, Abrams and company are trying to bring the innovation and beauty of the 21st century epic film genre to one of the oldest franchises in television history. From the trailer, it looks like they have the visuals down. Luckily, even the young actors are acceptable as youthful incarnations of Spock and Kirk.

My fear is that Star Trek will invovle so many starship battles that it will look like Star Wars with Star Trek ships. Granted, the filmmakers have finally figured out that by tilting the camera they can make the battles more intense, and clearly there was a huge budget for special effects. I just hope it won’t be excessive.

My hope is that this film will breathe new life into Gene Roddenberry’s outdated creation, and show us why so many people still keep up these silly conventions.  As someone who never got into the Trekkie stuff, I’ve always felt that there was just too much to digest. There are literally decades of characters and plots. Star Trek never seemed to cater to anyone other than the hardcore crowd. Some time ago, that trend changed. They started doing a spinoff prequel series, and now there is a prequel movie that will reach a wider audience, and it features the original characters.  

I would suggest anyone remotely interested in the franchise check out this movie. If you are going to test the waters, start from the beginning and you might as well see it on a really big screen.