Sympathy For Mr. Vengeance Getting An American Remake

By Katey Rich 2010-01-07 08:30:50discussion comments
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About a month ago Slashfilm's Devindra Hardawar finally sat me down and made me watch Oldboy, Park Chan-wook's 2003 masterpiece about a man falsely imprisoned for years and then setting out for revenge-- that's where it starts, at least. Immediately I was able to recoil in horror at the idea of the planned Steven Spielberg remake, starring Will Smith in a role that did not at all demand to have a guy with a winning smile and cute kids.

Then that beautiful day came that the American Oldboy remake was cancelled, and the skies cleared and the birds sang again. But as it turns out, we're not in the clear yet. Screen Daily is reporting that Warner Bros. has picked up the rights for an English-language remake of Sympathy for Mr. Vengenace, a Park film that's kind of a spiritual successor to Oldboy without being a sequel. It's considered part of his "vengeance trilogy" alongside Sympathy for Lady Vengeance.

Obviously the immediate, knee-jerk reaction is to scream "Oh God, the horror!" and run away in pain. But I defer to Devindra on this one, who argues that Mr. Vengeance is the easiest of Park's three vengeance films to adapt for American audiences, and could actually be improved in some regards. The film follows a deaf-mute man who starts off wanting to raise enough money to buy his sister a new kidney, then winds up kidnapping his boss's daughter and, well, you can probably tell that things go badly from there.

Having not seen the movie, I have no idea if this is worth gnashing teeth over. Do you guys agree with Devindra, or would you rather burn every print of Park's films if that's what it took to keep American hands off them?
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