We take an in depth look at Spike Lee's remake of the Korean classic.
Spike Lee’s Oldboy remake is finally gathering the momentum it deserves with a brand new trailer following the harrowing poster we were treated to not so long ago. Following what felt like years of stuttering, possible Will Smith and Steven Spielberg partnerships and even the dreaded kibosh, the American reboot of this Korean cult classic has a trailer.
Joe Doucett (Brolin) after years of solitary confinement
For those who haven’t seen Park Chan-wook’s original revenge film, the story follows Oh Dae-Su – a man kidnapped and imprisoned for 15 years, who finds that his release plunges him further into the sick and twisted plan of his nemesis.
The main worry for fans of the original, was that the remake wouldn’t stick to the same twisted style; the expertly choreographed violence that made the 2003 film such a hit. The stylized Asian genre-film aspects are there, but infused with Lee’s art-house and Hollywood alchemy – finally an American remake of a foreign film we can get excited about.
Luckily, as the trailer demonstrates, Lee’s version captures the essence of its predecessor, and Josh Brolin - who plays advertising exec Joe Doucett - cuts the same crazed victim as Min-sik Choi did a decade ago. “His only request was just don’t do the same movie and it’s like no we're not interested in that," Brolin told Collider on meeting Chan-wook about the remake. “Structurally, as a scaffolding, it’s the same movie, but what we do with is very different. It looks very different.”
Lee loves his symoblic box
Lee has a battle on his hands; 2003’s Oldboy was a critical success, bagging an 81% rating on Rotten Tomatoes, but garnering a cult following amongst world cinema aficionados and Asian film fans alike.
To replicate even an iota of that success, his reboot will have to remain respectful to the original story whilst adding just enough to evolve the legend. Oldboy – also starring Elizabeth Olsen, Sharlto Copley and Samuel L. Jackson - is out on Oct. 25.
Brolin exacting his revenge
Olsen stars as Marie in Oldboy
Brolin keeps track of his kidnapping on his arm
The umbrella features in the trailer, but what does it mean?