Why the hell would anybody want to remake Berry Gordy’s The Last Dragon? I’m honestly stumped here – while I love The Last Dragon on many levels, it’s most successful levels are the ironic aspects of silly 80s culture. I don’t think the story or character of The Last Dragon are so compelling that anybody needs to revisit them.
But I guess the name is a brand, and so we get a remake from Gordy’s son Kerry, coinciding with the 50th anniversary of Motown. The only rays of hope come from the fact that RZA is co-producing and that the film is set in the modern day, and not some kind of nostalgic pastiche. That said, I don’t know that the modern day quite offers the sort of kitschy, playful gaudiness that hip hop in the 80s had. But just in case RZA had you too happy, know that the guy who wrote the Master P opus Uncle P is writing this remake.
Samuel L Omnipresent Jackson has signed on to play Sho’nuff, the Shogun of Harlem. This completes the Samuel L Jackson One Degree of Separation From Famous Dead Black People 2008 edition – he stars in Soul Men with the bodily remains of Bernie Mac and Isaac Hayes, and now he’s stepping into Julius Carry’s Converse.
One thing about the remake: it must include Taimak in some way, in some form. This is mandatory. It just isn’t The Last Dragon without a touch of Taimak. There’s no chance that he’ll return as ‘Bruce’ Leroy Green, and I guess he won’t be taking the obvious role of Sho’nuff, but there must be a place for him in here somewhere.
And by the way, if you haven’t seen The Last Dragon, I’m officially calling your movie lover credentials into question. This is a cornerstone of the 80s. Do it as a double feature with Big Trouble In Little China if you must, but just see this movie before the remake hits next year.