Baddie – Evolution?
Lesson – Sometimes, first time’s the charm.
Taste is in the eye of the beholder.
Last week I reviewed a film called “The Lost Tribe”. If you’ll recall, it’s a remake of this film – produced less than two years after.
This is the German movie poster. I haven’t taken German in a few years, but I know that it is confusingly called “The Tribe” and captioned “The Forgotten Ones”. In either case, let’s dive in, shall we?
If you haven’t already, I suggest reading my post from last week. Not just because it’s one of my better reviews, but because I’m going to do a lot of compare/contrast stuff.
First, can we talk about crazy Jewel Staite on the cover of this thing, wielding a goshdarn machete?
Actually, let’s talk Jewel Staite. For those who don’t know my love affair with here, it started with “Firefly”. Well, it kinda ended there too. She’s a weird goth chick on “Dead Like Me” and then she makes a guest appearance on “Supernatural”. But really, she’ll always be Kaylee, the spunky mechanic. I mentioned last week that I would probably only consent to watching this movie because of her.
As first impressions go, “The Forgotten Ones” has a terrible one.
The sailboat sequence is stale and contrived. The dialogue is weak, and the character relationships are shoved forcefully down the audience’s throat. In this sense, “Forgotten Ones” is weaker. Having crashed on the island, Peter proposes to Liz (Jewel Staite) and it’s touching. Supposedly. The audience is still recuperating from Peter being a MASSIVE TOOL not even five minutes prior. The chemistry between actors, by the by, is negligible.
Let’s talk about the differences, and what I think of them. I know you’re all dying to know.
- “Forgotten Ones” does not let the audience know that the creatures are basically blind until one is inches away from Liz in the most suspenseful part of the film. Then, yes, she covers herself in berry juice and executes a Schwarzenegger. It’s somehow much less annoying this way. There is no predator vision!
- The creatures click and squeal like terrifying dolphins. Or any other animal that uses sonar to navigate because they’re blind. This is science. This makes much more sense than the weird ‘tribal language’ in “The Lost Tribe”.
- The creature design is actually cooler looking, possibly because they look less Predator-esque. Last week’s screenshot doesn’t do them justice at all. This might be because…
- “The Forgotten Ones” is SO MUCH more suspenseful. It gets to the action quicker, and the creatures move sneakily. There are moments where you don’t notice them in the frame until they dart away. Delightful! They mutilate much more logically.
- No stupid love story. Only stupid love pre-story.
- No stupid government/church conspiracy. Awesome.
Having now seen both of the films, my opinion is this. Why the remake? Is “Forgotten Ones” a great movie? God, no. Is it a delightful b-quality horror film? Yes! Absolutely! It feels like the director made “The Forgotten Ones” and grabbed a test group of people who suggested things like –
“HEY. What about a government conspiracy!? OH! Or the Church. The Church hates change.”
“The love story sucks. She should find the engagement ring when she finds his dying corpse in the creature den.”
“I didn’t know the creatures were blind. Make it clearer. Y’know, like in Predator. I like to know what’s going on at all times.”
So, this being said, here’s the conclusion.
Awful start. Better creatures. Simpler plot. Much less complicated, and therefore a better film. I don’t often get to directly compare films like this though, so for that I’m grateful. Additionally, the creatures in “The Forgotten Ones” display some more human qualities that make the ‘missing link’ connection a bit more believable. Even if it doesn’t even come up in this version. Another thing they threw in for giggles when they made “The Lost Tribe”.