Wednesday, April 08, 2009

The Tenant... Remake!

So I found out a while back that they are remaking one of my favorite films, THE TENANT. Michael Bay is producing. This seems like such an unlikely movie to remake because the first time around it didn’t burn up the box office - it’s kind of a cult film - and even though it’s based on a novel, it’s success is mostly due to its director, Roman Polanski. (Hey, didn’t Bill do a post on that guy a week ago, and that CHINATOWN film he directed?)

I am a fan of Polanski - not his criminal activities, but his film direction. This guy has a real style that can make the most normal scene into something creepy. It takes a while for the plot to kick in on ROSEMARY’S BABY, but you know from the start that something is very wrong because of the way Polanski shoots things. There’s a scene in ROSEMARY where the camera is looking through a door frame, and the subject is just off camera - you can see her legs, but her face only if she leans forward. And as a viewer you try to lean forward to get a better view. He loves to have the camera slightly tilted in scenes - not enough for you to notice, but enough for you to feel like something is wrong. And he does a strange thing in THE TENANT by building a room and furniture just a little bit larger than normal for a shot - so you don’t consciously notice the difference, but get the feeling that the protagonist is smaller than he was a minute ago. Not smaller in stature as much as smaller as a person. Polanski does all of this crazy stuff to make his films creepy and odd, and it’s usually not the *plot* that makes one of his films stand out as much as it’s the way he shoots and edits and the strange little moments. THE TENANT is an amazing collection of creepy moments shot in a creepy way, with a story that is also kind of creepy.

The story is kind of what would happen if Woody Allen wrote a haunted house movie. There is a serious housing shortage in Paris, and our hero Trelkovsky comes up with a great method for finding an apartment... he looks through the obituaries. When he reads a news story about a woman who tried to commit suicide by jumping out her apartment window and is not expected to live, he figures he’s found a place to live. He goes to the building, where he meets the manager (Shelly Winters) and the building owner who lives there (Melvin Douglas) and they give him the third degree. They are really picky about who they rent to. Of course, they can’t rent him the apartment until the last tenant dies. He goes to visit the last tenant, Simone Schull, at the hospital... to see how close to dying she is. He wants this apartment!

There he meets Simone’s hot friend Stella (Isabelle Adjani who was Warren Beatty’s girlfriend at the time), and he has to pretend he knew Simone. When he flirts with this girl, completely out of his league, she flirts back - they have poor Simone in common. At Simone’s bedside in the hospital - she is covered head to toe in bandages with only her eyes and mouth exposed - Simone takes one look at Trelkovsky, screams, and dies. He has his apartment!

But the apartment is, well, strange. First - all of Simone’s clothes and belongings are there. And everyone from the guy at the corner store to the local restaurant confuses him with Simon Schull - even though she was a woman and he is a man... and they don’t look a bit alike. Soon his life has gone to hell...

Here's the Trailer:


One of the cool things in the film is the use of the Luma Crane - first time it was used on a film. This device is an "arm" the camera goes on that can pan and tilt, allowing the camera to do all kinds of cool things. It's used in the opening title sequence, which has some similarities to Hitchcock's REAR WINDOW opening titles, in fact - the film is kind of like REAR WINDOW on acid...



What right does my head have to call itself me?



Filthy little brat!



Those wacky neighbors! This scene, near the end of the film, actually makes complete sense by this point in the film... The movie does a great job of making the crazy seem so normal, that we understand why he's wearing a dress and make up.



Now, can you imagine the mainstream version of this film aimed at the 15-25 year old demographic? If someone in that demo came to see this, thinking it was going to be a horror movie like FRIDAY THE 13th, what would they think?

The good news about the remake is that they have the amazing Scott Kosar scripting. He wrote THE MACHINIST, which has some similarities. Of all the screenwriters working in the biz today, he's the perfect match for this story... but who the hell will they get to direct it? And how will they sell something this weird to a mainstream audience?

- Bill
IMPORTANT UPDATE:

TODAY'S SCRIPT TIP: Great Character Introductions and those PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN.
Yesterday’s Dinner: Popeye's Chicken - more grease! But *great* biscuits!
Pages: One scene on the Country-Western script, and I'd hoped to do three. But progress is progress.

3 comments:

Brian said...

This has to be one of the worst ideas for a remake since Brian De Palma's SISTERS. Kozar did a decent job imitating Polanski with THE MACHINIST but what's the point? As you said, it's not a title with mass audience awareness like ROSEMARY'S BABY. And if Kozar is teamed again with someone like Brad Anderson the question is now not about marketing but about art. What can a filmmaker expect to bring to the film that would be new? I've read the Roland Topor novel but Polanski and Gerard Brach did about as fine a job of adapting and expanding on it as can be imagined. There are few filmmakers working today who understand how important it is to create a strong visual and aural realism in order to slyly inject surrealism.

At best it would be an imitation. At worst, a teen horror flick with what Polanski called "tossed salad editing".

martinb said...

I think Polanski is excellent. His MACBETH is, for my money, the best adaptation of any Shakespeare play on film.

But THE NINTH GATE was dreadful.

Bad Ass Qouets said...

Apart from height of sensations and success among the masses, Viagra has raised many safety concerns as well. These concerns have made Pfizer Pharmaceuticals and the FDA have recently reorganized warning label for Viagra. One should know all the risk factors, like side effects and drug interactions that are associated with the blue pill before experiencing its magic.

One should not take Viagra if;

* He is taking any nitroglycerin drug.
* He had a recent heart attack or stroke.
* He had a recent case of life-threatening arrhythmia i.e. irregular heartbeat
* He is having problem of extreme hypertension and hypotension
* He is having a history of retinitis pigmentosa
* He is on Alpha Blockers, such as Flormax and Uroxatral. Person should avoid these drugs within 4 hours of consuming Viagra

One should be very considerate before using the drug and should have a prescription from a health care professional. Viagra can do wonders to you if it is used properly. It can be a great cure for impotence or better say, erectile dysfunction. If there are present hundred cases of death because of Viagra, there can be shown millions of cases of success where Buy Viagra Online helped men achieving unbelievable sexual activity. There are found hardly any significant or lasting deleterious side effects, since the arrival of Viagra in April '98, provided, proper care is taken and precautions are kept in mind.
Sample Pack that had six pills.
I tried to buy viagra
before without any luck. the next night (Friday) I viagra online
and got really hard in about 20 minutes. I took a shower before we went to bed and basically had a hard on the whole time. I was able to flex my penis harder than normal. When I got out of the shower I came into bed, still with a rock hard erection- When my wife saw me at full attention, she asked "What got into you!?" I did not tell her I had purchase viagra
Pill, but that I was just super horny. We had a very good sex session- she had an orgasm, and I was able to keep it up during "reverse cowgirl", which is her favorite sex position. Last weekend while we were playing around, she even took a picture of erections to show her girlfriends at work! At first I told her "no way".I am not sure yet if I am going to use viagra alternative

Drug Name

Viagra (Sildenafil)
Drug Uses

Viagra is used for treating erectile dysfunction (e.g. male impotence). It works by helping the blood flow into the penis to achieve and maintain an erection during sexual stimulation.
How Taken

Viagra is to be taken 30 minutes to 1 hour before sexual activity. You may take it up to 4 hours before sexual activity. Viagra is not supposed to be taken more often than once per day.
Drug Class and Mechanism

Viagra is a phosphodiesterase type 5 inhibitor and it works by helping the blood flow into the penis to achieve and maintain an erection during sexual stimulation.
Missed Dose

Viagra is to be used as necessary, so you are not supposed to take it according to a schedule.
Storage

Viagra is to be kept in its original container. It is to be stored at room temperature between 59 and 86 degrees F (15-30 degrees C) away from moisture, heat and light and out of the reach of children

eXTReMe Tracker