I can’t quite explain why I don’t cringe at the notion of a Sympathy For Lady Vengeance remake the way I did for the potential Americunizashun of Oldboy. On most days I think Lady Vengeance is the better film. But I since it doesn’t have the instant recognizance of Oldboy, maybe it’s that I don’t harbor suspicions that a remake is only the result of a studio trying to latch onto what was (for some) the movie of the minute.
Or maybe it’s that, despite the title and basic premise (a woman released from prison recruits former prison associates to help her orchestrate a revenge scheme) this isn’t as personal a story as Oldboy. Lady Vengeance has a broader take on the impact of vengeance and what it can mean to a group of people, not just to an individual. That leaves it open for wider successful interpretation; a lot of things can change, either cultural signposts or the actual plot and character, and you’d still have a movie worthy of the title.
Or maybe it’s just that I know Charlize Theron can act when she wants to, so when she mentions remake potential to Boston.com (as noted on Bloody Disgusting) I don’t get that sinking feeling. This is just talk right now, and we all know how much luck has befallen the Oldboy remake, so there’s plenty of time to grab Tartan’s Lady Vengeance DVD and make it (deservedly) your new movie of the minute before the real shit hits the fan.
If you like the idea of Theron starring in this remake, you’re not alone. According to MTV, original director Park Chan-Wook was the guy that suggested she try it.
Does that put a different spin on things?
“He made an almost perfect film,” Theron says, “[but] he came to me and said he really
wanted us to do this. He wanted to see that story told in an American
society. If he wasn’t so encouraging I don’t think I could go
through with it. We’re intimidated almost beyond belief.” She also says that the project is in “very, very early stages of development,” so it might not ever happen.
Now I’m so much more intrigued.