Everything old is new again

I know the conventional wisdom about there only being seven basic plots to which every story can be (in one way or another) boiled down. I do sort of like it when the entertainment industry at least attempts to pretend they’ve come up with something new, though. Which is why, lately, all of the movies made from books or remaking television series’ of yore or even—to me, this is the greatest transgression—remaking a movie that was already a movie is sort of boring me.

Hope springs eternal, and I often hope for a new crop of original ideas to surface.

Well, it looks like the trend towards remakes won’t be ending any time soon, and that goes double for animated features. Via Animated News, I’ve found enough information to keep me busy for a while:

Box Office Mojo has the latest release dates for some anticipated animated projects. Apparently, Fox’s Alvin and the Chipmunks will perform in theaters on December 14 of this year. Next year, Warner Bros.’ Where the Wild Things Are will hit cinemas on October 3. In 2009, two films from Sony Pictures Animation will arrive: Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs on March 27, and Hotel Transylvania on September 25.

Oh, the very many feelings that accost my brain upon reading this. First, let’s just get it out of the way: Alvin and the Chipmunks? Really? And all this time I thought that someone had finally figured out that, hey, endearing mischievous qualities aside, those chipmunks sometimes hit a frequency which only dogs can hear. And the rest of the time most of us just wish only dogs could hear them.

Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs is a great book, though I’m having trouble picturing it as a feature-length film. Despite this, I’m excited to see what they’re able to do with it.

But I draw the line at Where the Wild Things Are. No. If ever there was a book that was utter perfection as a book, this is it. Even if the movie is good, it feels like a sacrilege, somehow. If future generations of children don’t want to bother sitting down with Wild Things because “eh, I’ve already seen the movie,” well, I think that would be a travesty.

I also think that part of the reason the book has been so mesmerizing for so many years is because of the spaces between what is said and what is drawn, where a child’s imagination can go wild (okay; pun intended). I love a good movie as much as the next person, but no matter what gets inserted into those spaces, it cannot possibly match the magic of a not quite knowing for sure.

But maybe that’s just me. And no one consulted me before they started this movie thing, can you imagine? (Hey, Warner Bros! Call me!)

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One thought on “Everything old is new again

  1. If you love Maurice Sendak’s ‘Where the Wild Things Are’ you might be interested in visiting http://www.cafgivinggarden.org – the site showcases the ‘Where the Wild Things Are’ inspired garden being designed by Tiggy Salt for this year’s Chelsea Flower Show.