I've always believed that the best way to tell a story is through a novel, but the best way to allow people to live the story is through a movie. Some stories, however, as so good that one film just doesn't cut it. There are a few storylines that have been retold for different generations of cinematic audiences to enjoy. Here are some great movies that have been remade in later years. Perhaps after seeing them all, you can decide, which director told the story the best?
1. The Count of Monte Cristo
The Count of Monte Cristo is a brilliant book by Alexandra Dumas, published in 1844. It follows the story one young Edmond Dantes, a bright eyed optimistic seaman, preparing for his future. That is, until he is accused of committing treason against the republic that had exiled Napoleon.
The result of the malicious jealousies of others, Dantes spent the the next nearly two decades in the dread island prison, Chateau D'if, an inescapable asylum. That was time he spent perfecting the details to exact his revenge on those who ruined his life, before finally breaking out to bring his plans to fruition.
This classic tale reached the big screen (or the silver screen at least) as early as the start of the 1900's. Since then over ten different versions of this incredible story have been told through cinema.
2. The Longest Yard
Meet Paul Crewe, a former football legend who finds himself in some trouble involving a car chase, which leads to his incarceration. His sentence was to be for a period of 18 months, during which he learns of a football game organized between the prisoners and the guards.
Crewe, with some guidance from the wiser of his inmates, recruits prisoners to play and trains them, so they can really use the opportunity to stick it to the guards. This 1974 movie was not only remade by Hollywood in 2005 with Adam Sandler, and guest starring Burt Reynolds (star of the 1974 film), but by the British and Egyptian film industry as well.
3. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
(By Urko Dorronsoro, Wikimedia Commons)
Based on the classic novel by Roald Dahl, Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory takes a look inside the mysterious and wondrous factory of chocolate moghul Willy Wonka. Young Charlie Bucket is one of the lucky few that also got a chance to venture inside for a rare opportunity. But this chocolate factory comes with many perils. However, those who survived would be granted quite a reward.
The story first debuted on screen in 1971 with the incomparable Gene Wilder playing Willy Wonka. Willy Wonka and his Oompa Loompas regraced the big screen in the 2005 box office hit entitled Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, also following the journey of the golden hearted but down on his luck Charlie Bucket, with Johnny Depp playing the elusive King of Candy.
4. Oceans Eleven
(By ocean's eleven, Wikimedia Commons)
This 2001 film was a huge hit, with George Clooney, Julia Roberts, Brad Pitt, Matt Damon and a general star-studded cast. Danny Ocean (George Clooney) teams up with 11 experts in their field (not to mention, friends) to carry out an elaborate heist. Despite the attention this movie got, the original story of Danny Ocean and his 10 compadres was told in 1960.
Starring the members of the brilliant and hilarious Rat Pack (Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, James Dean, and Sammy Davis Jr., among many others), the men plan the brilliant robbery of 5 different casinos, save for one hiccup that gives everything a comical but disastrous twist.
5. The Thing
By Philippe de la Muerte, Wikimedia Commons)
This science fiction horror film is based on the novel Who Goes There by John Campbell. It's follows the discovery of other worldly life by a group of scientists, a discovery that turns into a battle for their lives. This brilliant novella has been adapted for the screen on three separate occasions.
The most common is The Thing (1982) starring Kurt Russell and directed by John Carpenter. In 2011, the movie was remade with an American and Norwegian cast, starring Mary Elizabeth Winstead. However, the original cinematic debut of this story was in the 1951 film, The Thing From Another World, a black and white feature, starring James Arness and Margaret Sheridan.
6. 101 Dalmations
This sweet and furry tail (see what I did there) was the first to start the more currently popular trend of remaking animated films as live action movies. In 1961, the original animated film was released by Disney, with Betty Lou Gerson as the voice of Cruella De Vil, an heiress intent on having a coat made from Dalmations.
The film was a rousing success and it's numerous re-releases were also hugely popular. So no surprise when the story made it to the big screen in 1996 in a real-life movie starring Jeff Daniels, and Glenn Close as Cruella De Vil.
7. The Parents Trap
(By Reynold Brown, Wikimedia Commons)
The Parent Trap is the well-known story of two identical twin sisters separated at birth by their parents divorce. They finally meet each other, over a decade later at a summer camp their respective parent has chosen to enroll them in. After recovering from the initial shock, quickly as kids do, they proceed to hatch a few hair-brained schemes to bring their distant parents back together and reunite their family.
The first movie of this name was released in 1961, starring Hayley Mills in dual roles as both twins. The success of this movie would then lead to not one, not two, but three sequels being made by 1989. It was in 1998 that the movie got a modern twist to it and was remade by director Nancy Meyers, starring Lindsey Lohan, in her cinematic debut. Both the 1961 movie and the 1998 movie are based on the German novel Lottie and Lisa, by Erich Kastner.