The Wachowski Brothers are following in the footsteps of everyone else in Hollywood and doing a remake. Speed Racer is set for release in May of 2008 and is rumored to have the kind of eye popping effects that made The Matrix movies cost so much. The Wachowski Brothers movie The Matrix is my Best Movie Ever and I hope they will have a story to go with the gee whiz effects. But it is Speed Racer we are talking about here-Speed enters race, Speed is forced out by bad guys, Speed returns to race and wins. Yeah!
For those of you under forty, Speed Racer was a Japanese cartoon about a really cool car that could do several really nifty tricks. The car could fly for brief periods of time, cut down trees that were in it’s path, send for help with a little robotic bird, be driven underwater, and scale walls with it’s super sticky tires. This was one bitchen automobile.
The characters on the show were Speed, a whiny teenager that was constantly shocked by everything that happened to him. His girlfriend Trixie who did a lot of shy smiling when she was not being shocked by everything going on around her. A monkey that helped around the garage when he was not being shocked by everything around him. A little brother that was always in the way when he was not being shocked by everything around him. Did I mention that everyone in Speed Racer spends a lot of time being shocked by everything going on around them? There was also a lot of yelling, stomping, spitting, and blushing.
When this show was first on the term Anime had not yet found it’s way into American ears, this was just a cartoon, albeit an odd one. There were a lot of serious things going on in this show, people dying and cars bursting into flames. It had great music and sound effects, which the Wachowski brothers are going to use in their new movie. The fancy effects are rumored to be super sharp focus, as cartoons have little reason to ever be out of focus, and a lot of really bright colors. Colors were a bit deal in 1960s as color TVs were a new and wondrous thing. Which is why Star Trek, Batman, I Dream of Jennie and most other TV shows of the time were filled with blindingly bright sets and costumes.
Since The Matrix movies were basically filmed in black and white, it will be interesting to see what The Wachowski Brothers do with a full color pallet. Peter Jackson’s favorite movie was King Kong, his remake is my Worst Movie Ever. The Wachowski Brothers favorite show was Speed Racer, let’s hope they can manage to do better with their favorite than Jackson did with his.