By Shelton Bumgarner
I have repeatedly questioned why instead of pretending to cut Donald Trump’s head off, why Hollywood doesn’t collectively turn its guns on Trumplandia. I am well aware that it takes time to conceive of, develop, write and produce a scripted drama of any sort. It just takes time. I get that.
But you’d think the little media bubble that I live in would be at least occasionally punctured by buzz that this or that anti-Trump movie or TV was being produced. And, yet, to date, I have heard of nothing. It’s all very odd.
I just don’t get it. Is it that Hollywood is too shook or is it that the executives that would be the ones to greenlight such things are complicit in Trumplandia and they simply won’t risk losing money on an obvious anti-Trump metaphor while events are actually happening. It’s just too soon for them to think about alienating that core 30% of the population that supports Trump no matter what?
And, remember, the last time that Hollywood actually went to war was, well, a war — World War II. And it could be that Hollywood executives with some institutional memory know that during Watergate people kind of tuned out of politics in pop culture. The only relatively contemporaneous piece of art to come out of Watergate was All The President’s Men.
But having said all that, here are my suggestions for movies to be remade in this age of Trumplandia. Given that Hollywood apparently has completely run out of ideas, Hollywood might be more receptive to remakes than original content.
This movie is so obvious in the age of Trumplandia that it seems like it would be greenlit the moment someone suggested it seriously. The book itself is apparently doing gangbusters again and it seems that there would be both a market and an audience for another remake.
The Caine Mutiny
The final scene of this movie might cut a little too close to home. The whole movie, with its mad captain might be something people would really get into. And it’s great source material it would be so obvious a metaphor for the Era of Trump that it probably would do quiet well.
This movie would require a deft touch. The reason is it would be too easy to re-interpret the source material as an angry diatribe against Donald Trump’s presidency. The movie is, in its own way, already a metaphor for Trumplandia, if albeit in a much more innocent manner than we are currently suffering. But if you updated it technologically, it would be really funny and tragic and scary. Kind of like our real world is right now.
This is such a perfect movie — especially in the context of Trumplandia — that the only reason to remake and update it is we live in desperate times and simply re-issuing it wouldn’t be as culturally significant. We really need this movie remade as soon as possible. But I would suggest doing something with it other than a shot-for-shot remake. That would just be dumb and unproductive.
Seven Days In May
It is temping to simply use the name and not do much with the source material. Events this May really were shocking enough that you could give them a narrative arc and go from there. But, really, you could simply do somewhere where by there’s a coup attempt against a mad president or some such.
This movie is about honor and the responsibilities of power and if you remade it, it could be a sly commentary on Donald Trump’s presidency. At least it makes a lot of sense to me.
Anyway, having said all that, let’s talk about some original concepts one might look into.
A Movie About The Mule</strong>
This one seems so obvious that it’s sad that generally no one listens to me and thus nothing will happen. It would be different if I had the rights to The Foundation Saga and, like, was a screenwriter of any note. I would just write a screenplay myself and pitch it. But HBO is supposed to have the rights right now, so you’d actually have to have some money to make that a reality.
A sequel to Idiotocry
This is pretty obvious. Just update that movie to today’s insane reality and run with it.
A movie about the Fall of France in 1940
The Fall of France was a lot like Election Night 2016, and I think people would really see the comparison being made if someone produced a movie about it.
Regardless, Hollywood needs to get its act together. It needs to address this really important subject as quickly as possible. If the gears are put in motion now, maybe a really cool movie will pop out about Election Day 2018. That’s all we can hope for at this point.