So anyways, the Funny Games remake is a shot for shot remake, so I would definatly say check it out (maybe before my all too telling review of the original, but make sure to read it afterwards) especially now that it is with amazing actors (although the original ones were quite good) and it's in english!
Now Spike Lee is one of my favorite directors. But it's always been that way because his work as a whole is quite good. There is no doubt about it, everyone of his films is well made. However, not unlike the other great New York director (Woody Allen), he makes so many films, that it really is hit and miss. Now my 6 stems from the fact that it's acting (my favorite Samuel L. Jackson role, besides of course the obvious Jules character, is him as a crackhead in this, and Halle Berry is his crack whore!!!!) and the writing and directing are truly suberb as always. I gotta give the guy credit, and I generally enjoyed watching the film. However what made me almost give this well made film a 5 and infuriated me immensley (I was so angry that I had to watch one of my favorites, "Leaving Las Vegas", to cool down) was the film's messages. Now on the surface, it's a film about an interracial couple dealing with prejudice. It seems like the perfect conflict for a Spike Lee joint. Lee chose however, not to shed most of the screen time on the lovers, but the people affected by the lover's lust (all explain my choice of wording later). This leads to some very interesting scenes, but there is only so many long dialouge scenes about how racist everyone is that a 2 hour movie can hold. And since the lovers don't get much screen time [u]together[/u], you never really feel any chemistry between them besides lust. So you never care about the couple as a whole, which makes the audience care less when they have bad things happen to them. Now like I stated before, probably the best part of the movie for me was Samuel L. playing Gator the crackhead brother. Be that as it may, I was rather pissed off when Lee tried to throw a whole other message into this film with this Gator subplot. Lee has been criticized in the past for not adressing the drug issue, so in this film he just throws it in there. Now I don't mind subplots or submessages (if that's a word), but when your major message or plot is not working as it is, it's best not to throw another message in. For he 1st half of the film it just seemed like comic relief almost or at least some relief from unrealistic conversations about race (I've grown to accept these in Lee's films, but they still annoy me). However it turns into a conflict almost more prevelant than the main one in the 2nd half. Smoking crack has nothing to do with interracial couples besides the fact that you probably have sex with a variety of people when your a crack whore. Then with like 15 minutes to spare with the film, they resolve the "interracial" part of the film, which is an alright resolution, I dug it. But the resolution of the crack subplot is just embrassing. It is such an easy solution to fix the the conflict, that it just looks like sheer laziness (especially because it adds nothing to do with the main character or the film). And the end... wow that just made me mad. It really made you wonder what the movie you just watch was supposed to be about. It again just seemed lazy, and a cop out (while still looking like there is a definitive message). Worth watching on TV or for a rent, but definatly not Lee's best.
EGIB is a strange film. It is made during the time where Hollywood was the counterculture (the 70's). These were the days where people considered Easy Rider to be the Citizen Kane of New Hollywood. So when EGIB was made, I'm not surprised at all that it wasn't released in theaters, because basically it's the anti Easy Rider (which I know is not very profound if you see the movie because the main character shoots a picture of Peter Fonda and Dennis Hopper on their bikes, but bear with me), or at least they tried to be. It's about a cop (opposite) who drives a motorcycle, but hates it (opposite) and hates the highway (opposite) and wants to go higher up in the capitalism ladder (opposite). All the characters besides the hippies, hate the hippies (opposite). However what confused me during the 1st act was that this film was shot like Easy Rider. It was shot like the counterculture the film seemed to despise. *Spoiler alert* However towards the end, the cop realizes the hippies are better than these corrupt cops which leads to a rather pretentious scene with the cop and his partner Zip near the end. However what was hillarious was the fact that the end was literally THE EXACT OPPOSITE of the end Easy Rider. That's right. The hippies gun down the cop on HIS motorcycle. *Spoiler alert over* Now this film is rather confusing to figure out on a political level, but if you look at it as a character study, it's a pretty decent flick. The acting is great and the filmmakers knew what they were doing (The last shot is pretty bad ass). So I guess it was a good film, I'm glad DVD and TV are giving it the life it never had. I'd say check it out, it is definatly an interesting film especially because of when it came out (or actually didn't come out).