Alexander Aja continues his work with remakes as the producer of a forthcoming remake of William Lustig’s brilliant Maniac – whose ultra-violence caused Gene Siskel to famously storm out of the theater and rail against it on his show with Roger Ebert. The movie will be directed by Franck Khalfoun – a talent who delivered the parking garage stalker flick P2 and who has an extra C in his first name.
News of a remake, especially something as grisly and revered as this movie, needs some sort of sugar to help the medicine go down. The sugar this time is Elijah Wood – a giant spoonful of happy feet who will be stepping well outside his wheelhouse to play the serial killer. Say what you will about his role in Sin City, but that was not the blood-soaked mayhem and confusion that this murdering character demands. They are as different as the black and white Wood was painted with as Kevin, the silent cannibal.
Also, in a strange turn of rumored events, Badass Digest is reporting that unnamed sources are claiming the movie (or at least its kills) will be shot POV. It’s an interesting, if unoriginal, idea, and it could very well work beautifully. The only real concern is when the camera will cut away (if it’s just the kills in POV), because so much of Maniac was brought to life by Joe Spinell’s performance. He killed without mercy or understanding, and him staring on at his own work the same way a dog would tilt its head while doing a tough math problem was an addition that made the violence meaningful. If it’s simply a character study with some POV gore, it runs the risk of being skin deep. Now that wouldn’t be good for a horror remake, would it?