Will Magnificent Seven prove to be a worthy remake?

Published: September 12, 2016

Hollywood’s obsession with remakes does not seem to be ending any time soon. The least we can hope for is that they at least bring something fresh to the films they are attempting to reinvent.

With the fall movie season looming over us, one of the most anticipated films of the season is set to be released towards the end of this month, which actually happens to be a remake of a remake (originality in tinsel-town is in short demand these days); The Magnificent Seven. 

Ethan Hawke, Denzel Washington, Vincent D’Onofrio, Byung-hun Lee, Chris Pratt, Manuel Garcia-Rulfo, and Martin Sensmeier.
Photo: IMDb

An update of the 1960 John Sturges western of the same name, (which was in-turn a remake of the landmark Samurai epic, Seven Samurai from Japanese auteur Akira Kurosawa), The Magnificent Seven feels like a more kinetic and action-heavy reinvention of the classic western (judging by the trailer). Explosions, galloping horses, gunslingers and some fun, light-hearted banter can be seen in the picture.

The cast is pretty stellar too. The movie has Denzel Washington, Chris Pratt, Ethan Hawke, Peter Sarsgaard, Haley Bennett, Matt Bomer and Vincent D’Onofrio, and Training Day’s director, Antoine Fuqua, taking the reins behind the camera (this is his third collaboration with Denzel Washington).

Ethan Hawke, Denzel Washington, Vincent D’Onofrio, Byung-hun Lee, and Chris Pratt.
Photo: IMDb

And while Fuqua doesn’t have the most successful track-record (Olympus Has Fallen and The Equalizer were definite disappointments) he knows how to direct action and get great performances out of his actors. He proved with Southpaw that he’s a director who can elevate a film even if the source-material is familiar and somewhat predictable.

It’s also worth noting that the screenplay is written by none other than True Detective writer and creator, Nic Pizzolatto, so that’s definitely another added bonus.

For those unfamiliar with the plot, it’s fairly simple: nasty bad guys threaten a town, who hire a band of misfit outlaws, bounty hunters, and gunmen to save the day.

Denzel Washington and Chris Pratt.
Photo: IMDb

The western genre has been experiencing a bit of resurgence in recent years, thanks (largely in part) to Quentin Tarantino and his two recent films, Django Unchained and The Hateful Eight. This might not be something along those lines, but if anything, it should be an entertaining way to spend a couple of hours at the movies.

Khalid Rafi

Khalid Rafi

The author enjoys writing and is passionate about Pakistan Cricket. He tweets @TheKhalidRafi (twitter.com/TheKhalidRafi)

The views expressed by the writer and the reader comments do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of The Express Tribune.

  • Parvez

    The original had…..Steve McQueen, Yul Brynner, Charles Bronson, Eli Wallach, James Coburn ….music by Elmer Bernstein. Even with Denzel Washington how is this going to match up with the original ? How can you have a Magnificent 7 without a bald guy ? ….. Vin Diesel would have been good.
    But I agree it will be worth watching……..I love a good western.Recommend

  • pathanoo

    NOT A SNOWBALL’S CHANCE IN HELL. A Black You Brenner and who is the Steve McQueen in teh movie? The Black Yul is akin to Dred wearing Arab Shaikh Morgan freeman in the remake of ben Hur……..Hard to digest. Gives you a heart burn thinking about it. A certifiable BOMB AT THE BOX OFFICE.Recommend

  • Bibloo

    Nope. This movie ain’t going to cut it. The original is a classic.
    And remakes of classics simply don’t jell. [they had
    sort of remakes in the late 60’s. ‘Return of the Seven’ etc.
    they bombed at the box office.] From that period :-
    The good ones were ‘Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid’.
    ‘The Professionals’ and the ‘The Wild Bunch’ Great classic westerns!!Recommend


    TO pacify a non-Caucasiam audience, the producers have brought in
    heavyweight Denzil Washington in the role excellently portrayed by Yul Brynner.
    And, who can replace the ice cool Steve Mcqueen? Well, old is gold
    The problem with Hollywood (and Bollywood) is (a) running out of original material
    and (b) bad choices in cast eg BENHUR