US Remake of “The Secret in their Eyes”

The Guardian News: Chiwetel Ejiofor and Julia Roberts in first trailer for “Secret in Their Eyes” remake

“A star-studded remake of the Oscar-winning Argentinian thriller, also starring Nicole Kidman, has Roberts out for revenge against the man who killed her daughter. Given the near universal acclaim that met Juan José Campanella’s 2009 thriller “The Secret in Their Eyes”, initial reaction to news of a remake was less than enthused. But with a stellar cast and Billy Ray, the director of Shattered Glass and Breach, on board, it might not be the disaster that many expected. The first trailer for the remake has landed and has Chiwetel Ejiofor and Julia Roberts as FBI investigators working with their DA supervisor, played by Nicole Kidman. But after the daughter of Roberts’ character gets killed, their lives are torn apart. Like the original, there’s a narrative that alternates between past and present, 13 years after the murder, as the three still try to find justice.

It could provide a well-needed boost for the three stars, who have had mixed success of late. Since his Oscar-nominated role in 12 Years a Slave, Ejiofor starred in the muted Half of a Yellow Sun and has Z for Zachariah on the way, which received varied reviews at Sundance. Roberts might have scored an Oscar nomination for August: Osage County, but the film was seen as underwhelming by most. Kidman scored a hit with Paddington, but most of her other recent efforts (Before I Go to Sleep, Grace of Monaco, The Railway Man) have fallen by the wayside.”

See the original source of the article here, The Guardian [30.06.2015] – Last Accessed 28.08.2015.

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I side with those who protest against the remake. The original 2009 film must be better circulated or dubbed, if some people are unfamiliar with the movie. ‘El Secreto de sus Ojos’ (2009) is not just any Latin American movie: the film is acclaimed around the globe and much loved by all those who has seen it. It won the Best Foreign Language Film Award at the Oscars 2010. It is a great movie in so many respects: emotionally moving, intelligent, masterfully crafted, with a meticulous script and outstanding acting, to name just some of the things. Given all this, it is simply insulting to remake such a masterpiece. Only six years have passed since the release of ‘El Secreto de sus Ojos’, and this is certainly not like remaking nobody-ever-heard of ‘Infernal Affairs’ (2002) and turning it into ‘The Departed(2006). Some have commented that this new version differs substantially from the original, but, looking at the trailer, it seems that many important scenes were taken from the 2009 film and incorporated into this new one. What is the point? What we will see next? A remake of “Life is Beautiful’ (1997)? They should show some respect for original masterpieces, especially if those films also won Academy Awards, or such awards mean nothing anymore? Do you have a view?

For my review of the original Spanish-language film titled ‘El Secreto de sus Ojos‘ (2009), see here.

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9 Responses to US Remake of “The Secret in their Eyes”

  1. godtisx says:

    There is something haunting about this storyline. It’s my view too, not everyone recovers (similar viewpoint as the original writer)?

  2. Paul S says:

    Nope, I don’t think I’ll watch it. The original was too good. The found-the-corpse scene in the trailer hints at the lack of artistic depth in this remake.

  3. Claire says:

    I agree. I’m not totally opposed to remakes in general, but English language remakes of recent films are such a waste of time – see The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. Will give this one a miss!

  4. Mark Hobin says:

    “El secreto de sus ojos” was good, but I don’t view that film as sacred, so I’m still open to a remake. Whether it will top the original remains to be seen.

  5. I caught the remake and while I’m not a huge Julia Roberts fan,she was really,really good in this. I have yet to see the original so I’ll withhold my opinion on which was the better film.

  6. Nice commentary. Most of the time I do not care for remakes but there are some good ones. For instance, I love True Grit–the John Wayne version, but I like the Coen brothers remake even better. The same with Cape Fear. Both of these remakes were produced many, many years after the original, so that helps.

    • dbmoviesblog says:

      I agree with you on those and there are many other nice examples, but I think you are very right when you say a big time gap between an original and a remake helps. For example, apparently, they are already remaking “A Man Called Ove” (2015), a Swedish film which was nominated for two Oscars and with Tom Hanks to play the new lead too, and I honestly do not know what to think or feel. I don’t think it is very right.

      • Mmmm. I’ll have to check out A Man Called Ove. Haven’t seen it. Hopefully the remake will be decent but just because Tom Hanks is in it guarantees nothing; his last few films have been meh. And yes, it’s too soon. Disrespectful, I agree.
        Speaking of Swedish films–I think this is Swedish–have you seen The Silence? Oh, no it’s German. Anyway it’ is fabulous. Please watch it if you haven’t seen it and let me know what you think. I hope they don’t remake it. Nice chatting with you. Love your blog. Very intelligent.

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