That’s right, Johnny 5 is coming back to our screens, and they have named their director! Steve Carr, director of (ahem…) comedy classics ‘Paul Blart: Mall Cop’, ‘Daddy Day Care’ and ‘Dr. Dolittle 2’ is to take up the challenge of remaking a cult favourite.
Cynical fans may perhaps call into question the choice of director, a man with such a hand in Eddie Murphy’s comedic downfall and with a history of making barely anybody laugh. I was desperate to fit a ‘but’ into that last sentence, any reason that this remake might not be a disgrace to the original, but I’m at a loss. The only possible saving grace is the choice of writer, Dan Milano, who wrote for ‘Robot Chicken’, but that is even arguable, as whilst ‘Robot Chicken’ is (in my opinion, of course) occasionally very amusing, there are a lot of misses, and the sketch show nature of the programme doesn’t lend much credibility to his ability to write a good feature length script.
As far as respecting childhood memories, the film promises to be similar in essence to the original, but apparantly Johnny 5 will be bonding with a young boy, because we all know you just can’t remake a film without changing some major detail. I was going to criticise this choice quite harshly, but I thought about it and realised, it’s all down to ego. Filmmakers couldn’t just respect the original, update it, add in a few new jokes and maybe tone down the quasi-racism inherent in the character of Ben. No, because otherwise they stand no chance of being remembered for their version, if there is nothing different, how will Steve Carr ever stand a chance of being immortalised for a great remake? The answer should be obvious. It would be great to see a remake which actually didn’t fuck something up by changing facts willy-nilly. I can hear the old Johnny 5 begging for a different type of ‘input’. There is a reason the old ‘Short Circuit’ is a classic, and there will be a reason the new one will be consciously repressed.
Anyway, enough bitterness for now, perhaps someone on staff will have a pure respect and understanding of the original and decide to stop the systematic rape of all out favourite films for the sake of making a quick buck. I need a hero…