Talking Movies : Return of the Reboot
The author is the entertainment editor with The New Indian Express
SO what do you do when you’ve exhausted all the trite angles to a rather overused story idea in a franchise? Let it go and move on to a new one? Well, not if you’re a Hollywood production house. Instead, you’d attempt to reboot it, again and again, like a doctor performing CPR in a desperate bid for revival. And so, this week, CPR is being performed on The Mummy, which gets a third reboot. For the uninitiated, even The Mummy that most of the current generation is familiar with—yes, the one that stars Rachel Weisz—was itself a reboot. The franchise is almost as old as a mummy, as it dates all the way back to 1932 when the first film, The Mummy, was released.
In its latest version, Universal Studios have managed a casting coup of sorts by managing to rope in Tom Cruise. Incidentally, The Mummy isn’t the only film to be hoping that a new actor can cause a reversal of fortunes. The Spiderman franchise, which has gone through Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield, is also being revived with the effervescent Tom Holland. You have to hope that these reboots better be more than just films with fresh faces.
Raabta, starring Mahendra Singh Dhoni—sorry, Sushant Singh Rajput—has managed to remain in the news ahead of its release, thanks to a lawsuit. It turns out that the makers of SS Rajamouli film, Magadheera, saw the film’s trailer and had the same niggly suspicion some of us did. Only they took it a step further and filed a case against the makers of Raabta, accusing them of plagiarism. Raabta’s makers have since then come out all guns blazing against the accusation and asked the ingenious question that has paved the way for the film’s release — How can you know the story from a trailer? Sometimes, these battles make for more entertainment than the actual films. We’ll know by tonight if Raabta, touted be a ‘reincarnation drama’ (yes, that’s a genre), is an exception to this, and of course, if the comparisons with the Rajamouli film were justified.
Hit or miss
Gautham Karthik, who came in with tremendous fanfare on account of a much-hyped debut in Mani Ratnam’s Kadal (2013), trudges on in search of an elusive hit. Today, as his Rangoon (not to be confused with the Vishal Bhardwaj film that released earlier this year) hits the screens, he will hope that he can undo some of the damage caused by the dreadful Muthuramalingam, which attained cult status on social media for its almost parodic filmmaking. This time though, Gautham will have reasons to be optimistic. Hit machine AR Murugadoss is producing the film, while Fox Star Studios have taken on the mantle of distribution. Will Rangoon break the jinx for Gautham?