Special Report

24 Movie Remakes That Are Better Than the Original Now Available to Stream

Source: Courtesy of New Line Cinema

4. Hairspray (2007)
> Directed by: Adam Shankman
> Starring: John Travolta, Queen Latifah, Nikki Blonsky
> Original film: Hairspray (1988)
> Where to watch remake: Apple iTunes, Vudu, Google Play Movies, YouTube, Microsoft Store, Amazon Video, AMC on Demand, DIRECTV, Redbox, FandangoNOW, HBO Max

Director Adam Shankman’s exuberant 2007 film about dance-crazy Baltimore youth fighting for civil rights in the 1960s adheres more to the Broadway musical version than John Waters’ subversive 1988 take on the culture. The reboot is also noteworthy for John Travolta’s turn in drag as the mother of a teen dance queen. Audiences on Rotten Tomatoes gave the reboot a score of 85%, just above the original’s score of 80%.

Source: Courtesy of Twentieth Century Fox

3. The Fly (1986)
> Directed by: David Cronenberg
> Starring: Jeff Goldblum, Geena Davis, John Getz
> Original film: The Fly (1958)
> Where to watch remake: Vudu, Amazon Video, Google Play Movies, YouTube, Microsoft Store, DIRECTV, Starz Play Amazon Channel, Starz, Redbox, FandangoNOW, Apple iTunes

Critics found favor with the character development and special effects in David Cronenberg’s 1986 imaginative remake of the 1958 parable about the consequences of dabbling with nature, giving it a 92% Freshness rating on Rotten Tomatoes. Audiences awarded the film a score of 83%, topping the score of 71% of the original that starred one of cinema’s great ghoulish performers, Vincent Price.

Source: Courtesy of Paramount Pictures

2. Airplane! (1980)
> Directed by: Jim Abrahams, David Zucker
> Starring: Robert Hays, Julie Hagerty, Leslie Nielsen
> Original film: Zero Hour! (1957)
> Where to watch remake: Vudu, Apple iTunes, YouTube, Google Play Movies, Microsoft Store, Amazon Video, AMC on Demand, DIRECTV, Redbox, FandangoNOW, CBS All Access Amazon Channel

“Airplane!” is a reimagined version of the 1957 thriller “Zero Hour!” — which isn’t even a comedy. Jerry Zucker, Jim Abrahams, and David Zucker didn’t just buy the script, but also the actual rights to the earlier film. This allowed them to recreate numerous scenes and inject them with humor. “Zero Hour!” is now perhaps best known as simply being the source material for the 1980 comedy.

Source: Courtesy of Columbia Pictures

1. His Girl Friday (1940)
> Directed by: Howard Hawks
> Starring: Cary Grant, Rosalind Russell, Ralph Bellamy
> Original film: The Front Page (1931)
> Where to watch remake: Google Play Movies, Vudu, Kanopy, Pantaflix, YouTube, Hoopla, Amazon Video, Epix, Popcornflix, Pure Flix, Pluto TV, VUDU Free, Amazon Prime Video, Apple iTunes, DIRECTV, FlixFling, Dove Channel, Microsoft Store, The Roku Channel, FandangoNOW, TCM, fuboTV

Director Howard Hawks’ fast-paced homage to tabloid journalism, starring Cary Grant, Rosalind Russell, and Ralph Bellamy, has a Freshness rating of 98% from critics on Rotten Tomatoes. The site’s Critic Consensus calls the movie “possibly the definitive screwball romantic comedy.” The original film that featured Adolphe Menjou and Pat O’Brien is hardly a slouch, earning a 92% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. Audiences far prefer the Hawks film, however, delivering a score of 90% versus 60% for the earlier release.

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