This week's "Oldboy" is being marketed as a lot of things -- a bold, stylistic new thriller, the latest masterpiece from American auteur Spike Lee, a broody Josh Brolin movie -- but none of the advertising or promotional materials for the film are engaging with its place as a remake of an Asian cult classic.
The original "Oldboy," directed by South Korean filmmaker Chan-wook Park, was an exercise in rococo visual style and a taste test for even the most out-there international film fan. (When the scene where the lead actor eats a live octopus is at the bottom of the outrageousness scale, you know it's wild.) And while the new "Oldboy" superficially borrows from the original, it lacks many of the elements that made that film so special.
And while it's fairly well known that some big-time American movies have gotten their start in Asia (Martin Scorsese's Oscar-winning "The Departed" was based on the Hong Kong crime movie "Infernal Affairs," and western "The Magnificent Seven" has its roots in Akira Kurosawa's "The Seven Samurai"), there are just as many movies based on Asian films that aren't nearly as well known or recognized in the same way. So, here are five of them.