|The Fog (2005)
Starring: Tom Welling, Maggie Grace, Selma Blair, DeRay Davis
Director: Rupert Wainwright
ALSO! Check out where it ranked in our 2005 Year in Review.
In 1980, John Carpenter wrote and directed “The Fog,” an eerie tale of a small fishing town targeted for revenge by a killer fog. In honor of that movie’s 25th anniversary, audiences are now treated to an astoundingly awful remake. Although John Carpenter’s original was by no means a flawless enterprise itself, this uninspired, paint-by-numbers, teenybopper garbage directed by Rupert Wainwright is so bad it makes Carpenter look like Hitchcock by comparison.
This new version doesn’t even start off well. Wainwright quickly introduces us to the characters of the film – which consist solely of a few asinine teenagers (token black guy included) but not one we wouldn’t be glad to see dead. The colorful assortment of townies, drifters, and drunks from the original are long gone, and all we are left with is the same moronic cookie-cutter characters found in nearly every film of this genre.
The cast of this remake is a sad state of affairs indeed. Tom Welling (a.k.a. Clark Kent from the television show “Smallville”), eye-candy Maggie Grace from “Lost,” and some black dude from “Barbershop” headline. And in a bit of unintentional irony, the flat-chested but actually talented Selma Blair (who must have been brainwashed into making this film), rounds out the cast as the radio announcer Stevie Wayne, who was originally played by Adrienne “Tits” Barbeau.
The digital imagery of this film does nothing to help its cause, either. Although a vast improvement over the Christmas tree lights Carpenter used for zombie eyes at one point in his film, the use of computer effects in this instance is lazy and makes for much less imaginative filmmaking. Carpenter’s fish hook-wielding mariners lurking in the shadows and fog made for genuinely scary moments that this remake doesn’t even come close to.
The biggest tragedy with this new version, however, is the noticeable absence of Carpenter’s spine-tingling score. Whether this omission had to do with legal issues, or whether the producers had their heads thoroughly lodged in their asses, one thing is for certain: remaking “The Fog” without this music, or making it at all for that matter, was an exercise in ham-handed futility.