As any discerning readers will know – I absolutely HATE REMAKES, especially ones of great Asian films (Ju-On, Dark Water, Ringu…). It therefore came as a major shock to find out that a Hollywood remake of Battle Royale (one of my favourite films), is on the cards!!!
Battle Royale has never had a theatrical release in the US, and probably for quite a good reason – the story revolves around a class of Japanese school kids forced to kill each other whilst wearing explosive collars. Based on the novel by Koushun Takami, the story is set amid “an apocalyptic future in which schools are overrun by uncontrolled violence. The government responds by organizing an annual Battle Royale, in which a school class is picked at random and students are pitted against each other on an abandoned island in a game of survival“. The controversy that surrounds the film does not come from its violence but from the fact that it is committed by minors. Although it may be pretty gory and violent, it’s also satirical, witty and thought-provoking, making it a masterpiece of Japanese cinema.
I share the sentiments of fans worldwide – “Hell freezes over” wrote the editors at battleroyalefilm.net. “Let us pray for the best” said Harry Knowles at Ain’t It Cool News. Seriously, don’t do this – the original is already perfect, any remake will only do more harm than good! I just hope they don’t turn BR into just another teen slasher.