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Europe trumps Hollywood

Christopher Tookey says that remakes reveal the cultural divide between Europe and the US

Diabolique, it certainly is. In the latest botched remake by Hollywood of a European classic, smirky Sharon Stone stands in for sultry Simone Signoret. Only the actresses’ initials have anything in common. The sexual undercurrents of the original were deemed too subtle for the American market, and have become lipstick lesbianism; while the ferociously dark ending has been lightened, so that the film emerges as a stirring tale of female empowerment.

Diabolique is not the first European film to suffer such a fate. The most cautionary example of a European movie “going Hollywood” is still The Vanishing (Dutch version 1988,…

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