L.A. Confidential
The only guarantee when it comes to a remake is the inevitable comparison to the original and, while nine Oscar nominations probably ensure that no one takes another shot at L.A. Confidential, there are more reasons than just Academy acclaim for why Curtis Hanson’s take on the third novel in James Ellroy’s “L.A. Quartet” should remain uh, unremade. Since we're speaking of Oscars, it did win two of them - Kim Basinger’s Best Actress as well as Hanson and Brian Helgeland’s Adapted Screenplay - not to mention launch the careers of Russell Crowe and Guy Pearce. Okay, the latter is just a Golden Globe nominee but the award pedigree resumes with the rest of the irreplaceable ensemble including Kevin Spacey, James Cromwell, Danny DeVito and David Strathairn. And even if you could somehow repeat the stellar casting, there is no matching the deft adaptation which condenses 500 pages of Ellroy’s hard boiled historical fiction into a brawny and brainy film noir. Good luck to anyone ‘going back to the book’ to have a try. “Rolo Tomassi.” There’s still “The Big Nowhere” and “White Jazz.” Oh, and feel free to remake The Black Dahlia.

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