Making Movie History: How Many "Last" Houses Now?

Ok, so there is another remake coming out next Friday (the 13th mind you) and it is of Wes Craven’s Last House On The Left. We’ve seen TCM, The Hills Have Eyes, Friday The 13th, and countless others remade throughout the past ten or so years with some coming out decent and some coming out quite crappy. It is blatantly obvious that creativity and originality are things of the past within the filmmaking community, but I’m willing to sit through a remake without being bothered so much by those things. Although I must say that this remake is bound to disturb me, and I don’t mean by the content.

I really can’t wait until the day I am writing a column (maybe this one) and am able to say, “You know, the process of filming a ‘remake’ is really a lost art!” That statement right there folks would mean that originality had returned to Hollywood and new films were being released weekly. It sort of makes me wonder if directors in ten or twenty years will look back to films like Michael Bay’s Friday The 13th and come about with the idea of remaking it. That goes to show you that by the time we get through a fourth or fifth remaking of another remake; we may actually be back upon the original film totally by accident.

On the slate today is a discussion about only two films in a franchise, but they are actually one and the same. In 1972, a young (?) Wes Craven had written his first film and was getting ready to direct it. Little did we know that this original film would not only be overly disturbing and frightening but would also launch one of the most prominent careers in the history of the horror genre. I never had the privilege of watching the original Last House On The Left in theatres but not sure it would have made much of a difference. Whether sitting in a theatre with the Coke and popcorn covered floor beneath my feet or sitting at home in the dark…the film would have made my jaw drop and my eyes bulge at the audacity of what someone dared put on film and display it before me.

Filmmakers today have a real issue with pussy-footin’ (heh…pussy-footin’) around and doing whatever it takes to appease the MPAA. Things are too disgusting or too controversial. Hey, there’s way too much blood and the f-word is spouted off six times too many for that to get released. Most filmmakers these days would correct the mistakes so they can not only get the movie released but to get it down to a PG-13 rating. Oh yes, they aren’t trying to get an R and that is because it wouldn’t allow younger kids into their theatres without an adult…most adults wouldn’t want to see said film. Now they have taken away what they wanted their movie to be just so they could bring in more revenue. Stupid and retarded if you ask me. They shouldn’t dare call themselves filmmakers because they are not doing what their dream was but doing what they are told to do and acting like trained monkeys.

The Last House On The Left remake is rated R which gives me hope that they haven’t changed things too much are willing to accept the backlash that the subject matter of the original film brought. I have high hopes here and am willing to give this remake the title of “Best Remake Ever” if they succeed in disturbing me and portraying the original film in all its disgusting glory.

The Last House On The Left (1972)

Our story takes us into the lives of two young girls that have made their way into the city for a big rock concert. The night rolls on and eventually they end up being kidnapped by a gang consisting of two escaped convicts and their horribly trashy girlfriend. Bing-bada-boom the girls are raped and murdered making this trashy gang live up to their appearances. Through an unfortunate string of weird circumstances, the gang ends up hiding out in a house with a couple that seems extremely nice and normal but there is a unique quality about them. They happen to be the parents of one of the girls raped and murdered earlier in the evening. Word gets around they decide to take the law into their own hands and dish out their own versions of justice.

Sounds interesting and pretty gruesome don’t you think? Oh yeah it is, but not just because of what the story entails but how the story is shown on screen. Nothing is left to imagine and you get the whole shebang shown before your very eyes. The film is strong, forceful, violent, and overly disturbing so it is definitely not for everyone’s eyes or stomachs. It will offend you and it even did me a little bit and it takes a lot to get under my skin. Craven made sure that his first movie was a doozy and that he would get notice which is what he did. Hell, I didn’t even see the original Last House until the late nineties at which point I was in my late teens and at least had an affliction for horror movies already so my mind had could grasp what was going on before my eyes.

Nothing…NOTHING could prepare me for what went on in front of me on that television set. Not seeing every horror film in the world or knowing what was going to happen could have gotten me ready to not be shocked and appalled.

The Last House On The Left (2009)

They have gone as far as to apparently give us the same story and also to give it an R rating. Unlike most horror movies coming out in this day and age, the blasphemous PG-13 rating is nowhere in sight and that actually is what made me see the trailer and not say, “Awww shit another damn remake!”

It made me see the trailer, say “Awww shit another damn remake!” Get to the ending and hear an R rating and then change my tune and say, “Holy hell, they may actually have something here.” Many people I know realize that I’m the horror movie guru and have asked my opinion on this trailer they’ve been catching on TV lately. “Danny, is Last House On The Left going to be good you think?” “Is that a new movie Danny? It’s going to be a crappy remake huh?”

I’m so happy to tell them something like this…”Actually I think yall should go see it because it may surprise all of us. I also must warn you that if they do the original film any justice then you’re going to be disturbed and maybe even a bit sick. So don’t come running to my ass saying I didn’t warn you.”

Those behind this new version of Last House On The Left? You better not disappoint me here because you’ve given me hope and I don’t want this to be a whole mess of nothingness that tarnishes the fantastic quality of the original. Or I’ll come running after your asses. Consider that your warning!