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The 5 Best Horror Remakes

With the release of the rebooted 'Evil Dead', it seems all our favorite horror films have now been remade.

The results have been mixed, to say the least. Let's be honest; the vast majority have been garbage, adding nothing new to the originals. Every once in a while, however, a remake arrives which actually works, updating the source material for a modern sensibility. Some have even surpassed the original version. Here are the five best examples of how horror remakes should be handled.

5. Piranha (2010)
It may have kicked off the careers of its director, Joe Dante, and writer, John Sayles, but 1978's 'Piranha' lacked, er, bite. Sayles and Dante spent so much time trying to get across their environmental message that they forgot they were making a monster movie. For this remake, French director Alexandre Aja delivered a balls-to-the-wall old school exploitation with some of the funniest scenes of carnage outside the 'Final Destination' series.

4. The Fly (1986)
Few actors can compete with the legendary Vincent Price and, wisely, Jeff Goldblum went for an entirely different approach in David Cronenberg's remake of the 1958 classic. Goldblum cemented his quirky reputation in the lead role and the film is one of the last great examples of practical FX work. I just can't imagine this movie working as well with computer FX.

3. Dawn of the Dead (2004)
The recent wave of remakes began with this take on George Romero's zombie epic. While it's not in the same league as the 1978 original, lacking the satirical edge which made Romero's film so blackly humorous, it's still a very effective horror movie in its own right. Hard to believe it was made by Zack Snyder.

2. Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1978)
Don Siegel's fantastic 1958 original exploited the "red scare" paranoia of its era, as well as the tension in Hollywood caused by the McCarthy hearings. Philip Kaufman's excellent remake updated the story for a seventies sensibility and cashed in on the American public's mistrust of authority in the wake of the Watergate scandal. One of the big factors in this film's success is the likability of its protagonists. You really grow to like these people and it genuinely bums you out when they start to fall victim to the invading aliens.

1. The Thing (1982)
It's easy to forget that John Carpenter's masterpiece is a remake of Christian Nyby's 1951 'The Thing From Another World', so different are the two film's plotlines. If anyone remains unconvinced of the superiority of practical FX over CG, sit them down in front of this movie and watch as their jaw drops. Carpenter subverts the old notion that characters in horror movies always behave like idiots by making his protagonists a group of scientists. Despite making highly intelligent decisions, they still struggle to defeat the malevolent force possessing them one by one. There's never been a better remake in any genre, let alone horror.