Article by James
The release date for the remake of Straw Dogs looms ever-closer people. Scratching about the net a firm release date is as-yet unconfirmed, but mid September seems the go.
If you haven’t seen the controversial 1971 original, rent it. The film stars Dustin Hoffman (hail, brother) and Susan George. Roles they both own and implode in. Much has been said about this film, and it is deserving of the hoopla. Hoffman is uneasy and eventually unhinged as the mild mathematician that is pushed further than most of us could imagine, his wife (George), defying convention with a brave role that divides audiences. Morally, and otherwise.
I’m sitting on the fence with the remake though. Common tabloid fodder Kate Bosworth in George’s role and (as of this week at least) boyfriend, True Blood’s Alexander Skarsgard as the protagonist. Ever-ready James Marsden happens to have scored Hoffman’s old role. Odd really. Bosworth fits the role perfectly in many ways. Marsden, surprisingly well cast. Mr TB Skarsgard, hmmmmmmm.
The problem for me is, as the original will always take precedent, Skarsgard is far too attractive to fill this role. It becomes something else when this is introduced. The sheer intensity of the original is amplified by the protagonist’s ugliness in personality and form. Watch the trailer. Skarsgard “smoulders” more than he looms, as I’m sure he perfected in his casting as Eric the Vamp. What works for one, doesn’t work for the other.
Time will tell I guess, but I do hope Michael Bay had nothing to do with this……