THE FOG (2005)
So, considering "The Fog" is one of my favorite horror films of all time, I'll spare you the anti-remake rant, and I'll spare you the rant of how unnecessary this was, and how stupid Carpenter--who I once respected--is for agreeing to this remake, and I'll just go on with the damn review. Now, I consider myself a very mature man who knows how to restrain himself in terms of disagreeing with people. But to the people who found this to be a remotely good film, I must ask: Are you stupid or something? Is this what you define as entertainment, idiot? But, I digress. My apologies.
To be honest, I left behind all my bias', and pre-conceived notions (there were plenty), and I approached this from an optimistic fresh point of view, and wouldn't you know it? It still sucks balls. This remake is bad. Not just bad, but really bad. With basically the same plot, we delve in the San Antonio Bay/Island where they're preparing for their ceremony to pay respect to the town's founders. Fog rolls in. People die. Ghosts return mighty pissed off. And the shit hits the fan. By shit, I mean this film. Who thought this remake would be a good idea? Not the concept of remaking it, but this script? I've never seen such sloppy writing before in my life. I can safely say, I can squeeze out a better version out of my ass, without hesitation, but hey, we're not all working for Hollywood. So, what do the writers force feed through this manufactured screenplay?
One-dimensional characters, a non-existent plot, and scares that are anything but. Most of the frights consist of our stars looking around dark areas with a suspenseful score and the twang of the score rising to nothing. And the cast is comprised mostly of young hot people whom are young and hot and stuff. Totally. Who needs "Seventeen" magazine when you can watch yet another remake touting in style hip television stars? Maggie Grace from the hit show "Lost", Tom Welling from the hit show "Smallville". I'm sensing a pattern here.
Tom Welling plays Nick Castle, a sailor whose girlfriend Elizabeth has returned to the island to do... something. And if she comes from a rich family, why was she hitchhiking? Moving on, Tom Welling is now the sailor taking Tom Atkin's role. He's in his mid-twenties here, which means he was probably a sailor at five, bought a boat when he was fifteen, and now is a skipper. Wow, now that's close to reality, isn't it? And also, he has this large amazing car that is in basic mint condition, which means he either struck gold at one point in his life, was shipping more than fish on his trips, or was saving up since seven. And he's a sailor. That's very realistic. And how does he get his windshield replaced so quickly?
Welling is as wooden as ever. Dude, you're good playing a young Superman, but don't quit your day job; getting parts doesn't make you a good actor, it means you have a good agent. And you don't really look like a sailor. I know it's expected of a "Smallville" fan to blindly boast that Welling gave an "awesome" performance, but he's bad. And for no real reason, except displaying Sony's innate sense of stereotyping, there's a token black character added (DeRay Davis) for levity who spouts slang like crazy, attempts comedic relief, and has a role made up basically of one-liners and a slightly racist tone (he did everything but spout: "Feet Do's your stuff!"). Selma Blair's character Stevie, the town deejay is reduced to a cheesy love interest and really only takes up half of the film doing really nothing but interacting with her son and disappearing halfway through the film for no clear reason.
Selma Blair is sexy in her ways, but nowhere near as sexy as the busty, curvaceous Adrienne Barbeau. Meanwhile, Wainwright's direction lacks any nuance, atmosphere, tension, mood, et al, and he was the poor choice to direct as he fails to present anything resembling frights or spooks. The original has a much better sense of dread and mounting tension and gave me nightmares, and a lingering paranoia of fog banks. This one is limp dicked and will surely fail to provide any sense of after effects towards its audience. Much like many modern horror retreads, this lacks any staying power. Worst of all, this version is boring with no frights, barely any visuals that are even remotely memorable, and special effects that are utterly horrible. The studios once again believe that throwing special effects at us non-stop will amount to a horror film, but that theory only proves how utterly narrow-minded they are.
While Carpenter is too stupid to appreciate his own work, his fog play was much scarier than the one pictured here through pixilated wind, and badly animated ghosts whom when revealed, are as scary as the ghosts in the "Pirates of the Caribbean" films. Most of all, the horrible screenwriter takes sheer elation in creating a story with more sloppy plot holes than swiss cheese. You could drive trucks through the plots holes presented here.
In one ridiculous scene, Elizabeth notices how from pictures of the town, it gradually changes from huts to large buildings. Elizabeth notices how the town is nothing but huts in 1869 and then a bustling city in 1871. How in the living hell can you build an entire town in only two years? And from a small settlement yet? And just for the hell of it, instead of having a stand off with the ghosts at the lighthouse which was a very tense sequence, Stevie has a car crash proceeding to be rammed by a truck, which doesn't stop to check for survivors, then she and her car falls off a large hill, topples over three times, doing all of this without an explosion, or a single bruise on her body. Then she's taken underwater, and appears just in time barely soaked or hurt. Right. Writers must really think its audience is dumb, and if you liked this movie, then they're right.
I know, I can be immature sometimes. In one literally laughable sequence Stevie's son is being pursued by the demonic entities, and to keep them out, he hides in his room and seals the door with scotch tape. Yes, a kid that dumb deserves to die. And the monsters actually have trouble getting in to the room! And why did the victims turn to lepers and rot once touched by the ghosts? Where were the police in any of this? And when your cousin had a knife jammed in to his head, and your best friend was nearly killed and is now being accused of murder, it's best not to show your emotions. What happened to the ghosts hooks? What was with the unexplained rotting hand in the sand? If it's clearly stated the ghosts were there for the descendants, how come neither of them suffered a deservedly cruel wicked fate? And can anyone explain to me why the fuck Elizabeth turns in to a leper with the rest of the ghosts in the climax? Are these writers that stupid that they can't even keep their story straight or logical? "The Fog" is yet another really shitty remake that was obviously created to make money, and only money. It has zero staying power, and not a single creative bone in its body.
Take two big television stars with no talent, plop them down in to a boring retread, add terrible special effects, throw in a brutally sloppy script filled with plot holes galore, and a ridiculous almost offensive climax, and you have the elements for this gigantic piece of shit called "The Fog" remake. These studios just don't know when to quit while they're ahead.