I've got to wonder... If there is an afterlife, can those who have died see what's happening on earth? Variety has just reported that Peter Hyams is going to helm a remake of Fritz Lang's last American film -- Beyond a Reasonable Doubt. What would Lang say if he heard this his film was going to be remade by the man who brought us Running Scared, Timecop, The Relic, and End of Days? That's not to say that the man can't do it, or that great directors can't fail (as Gus Van Sant's Psycho taught us), but his track record doesn't instill much confidence.

The classic, which focuses on an ill-advised scheme to point out the flimsiness of circumstantial evidence, will get "a true 21st century spin for a new generation of cinema-goers," according to Foresight head Mark Damon. Yet again, I ask why it couldn't have just been "inspired by." The original plot: A publisher wants to make a point about how crappy circumstantial evidence is, so he talks his would-be son-in-law into planting clues suggesting he was behind a recent murder. At the last moment, they could bring out the truth and reveal the flaws in the system and death penalty. However, the guy holding that all-too-important information dies and mucks up the plan.

Anyhow, it's got an, um, interesting cast to boot -- Michael Douglas, Amber Tamblyn, and Jesse Metcalfe. They've certainly younged it up a bit -- the main players in the original, names like Dana Andrews and Joan Fontaine, were all at least in their mid-thirties. Whatever the case, we've got the King of California, plus a girl with a kick-arse 3D glasses-wearing dad and some traveling pants, and John Tucker all spun together for this century. I like most of the cast, and I still can't help but think: Why bother?

categories Cinematical