It seems that Hollywood can’t get enough of reboots these days, as franchise after franchise is dredged up from the vaults and given a shiny new makeover. While some of these may have been better left to languish in the past (*cough* Kingdom of the Crystal Skull), there are many reboots that have given new life to great concepts.
It’s fantastic to see some old favorites brought up to date with new effects or a modern twist, and there are plenty more amazing movies that could benefit from a new take on the original script.
Here are 10 '90s Movies That Need A Reboot.
10 Steel (1997)
With superhero films consistently raking it in at the box office, and fans clamoring for more diverse characters, it’s a surprise that no one has remade this ’97 comic book flop. With something of an urban Iron Man feel to it, Steel follows a smart but slightly bitter ex-army man who discovers that his weapons are being used by criminal street gangs. There’s no big twist here, as Irons (Shaquille O'Neal) builds himself an iron suit to take matters into his own hands.
A DC comic character closely linked to the Superman mythology, Steel would be a fantastic addition to the DCEU. Like many other failed comic book films from the ‘90s, it’s time to give this hero a second chance at the big screen.
9 Timecop (1994)
An action film with a great premise and some terrible special effects, Timecop could easily be rebooted into the time-traveling shoot ‘em up that everyone deserves. Time travel appears to be gaining traction in the mainstream again, with shows like Doctor Who, Heroes and Legends of Tomorrow, as well as films including Looper and Project Almanac. A reboot of a time-travelling action hero ticks all kinds of 2016 popularity boxes and would no doubt end up more successful than the original.
On top of the increasing popularity of the concept, Timecop could do so much more with modern FX and CGI technology. The original film, while a fun ’90s flick, is limited by its effects and has the potential to be absolutely incredible.
8 Pretty Woman (1990)
While Pretty Woman remains a heartwarming story to lift your spirits as high as Julia Robert’s perm, it’s about time that this classic rom-com got a little bit of an equality upgrade. Escorts and sex workers have found more of a sympathetic audience through shows and movies such as The Secret Diary of a Call Girl and The Girl Next Door, and it would be fantastic to see Vivian as a character with a little more agency, choosing her work, rather than one who needs to be rescued from it.
Perhaps it’s time for a modern Edward (Richard Gere) who can rediscover his values with a stunning (happy) call girl, rather than a poor woman living with a drug-addicted roommate. A twist on the classic white-knight tale would be a perfect way to bring a sexy, sweet comedy bang up to date for modern audiences.
7 Empire Records (1995)
For the few indie record stores who managed to make it through the ‘90s without closing, the fight now isn’t going to be for independence, but for existence. (Which would be a fantastic tagline, while we’re at it!) A lot of things may have changed, but this group of idiosyncratic teens are still entirely relatable.
The overachiever, the uninhibited one, the human version of grumpy cat, the friend in trouble… there isn’t one Empire Records character who isn’t relevant, and a reboot could update the store with hipsters buying vinyl and issues of online star-stalking and some last-minute flash-mob style crowdfunding efforts to save the store.
6 You’ve Got Mail (1998)
From the days when e-mail was exciting, rather than exhausting, this ‘90s rom-com was a novelty for building e-mail into its story (and title, obviously). Now that online romance and even platonic relationships have become hugely different, it would be a lot of fun to see this classic updated with some new technology.
One of the longest-lasting messages of the film is that there are many sides to people, sides that we may not always see right away. In a modern world where everyone is constantly trying to show off their best sides on social media, the parts that are hidden can be even more interesting to find. Why not have a new twist on this story of an unlikely online connection, where the couple knows more about the other’s online persona than their real one?
5 The Mask Of Zorro (1998)
A swashbuckling adventure perfect for fans of Pirates of The Carribbean, The Mask of Zorro was a fantastic excuse for lots of one-liners and over-the-top swordplay, and it’s a story that could easily be rebooted and told again and again.
While crowds are getting a little tired of origin stories, all those superhero movies have made viewers more than ready for a fully-fledged Zorro, swinging his sword through California in the 1800s. A reboot could also bring the character up to date as a modern superhero, although much of the charm is in those swirling skirts and dramatic capes that suit the time period perfectly.
4 Clueless (1995)
This mid-‘90s fan favorite is already a re-working of Jane Austen’s Emma, but is worthy of a reboot all to itself. The story of ditzy but well-meaning valley girl Cher (Alicia Silverstone) and her clumsy attempts at matchmaking and “helping” new student Tai (Brittany Murphy) remains relevant, even if those knee high socks don’t!
While some might say that it would be well-nigh impossible to improve on the ‘90s comedy, seeing Cher, Dionne (Stacey Dash) and Tai tackle their teenage hurdles with some modern inventions (and social media) would be amazing. Would Tai have been so willing to change if she was on Facebook every day with her old friends, or would we see her struggle to reconcile her old and new looks play out there? Cher would presumably be Insta-famous for her great looks, but her kind heart wouldn’t be changed by it.
3 Hackers (1995)
Our fascination with hacking hasn’t waned since Angelina Jolie and her friends decided to hack the planet back in ’95, and this geek classic would be an incredible choice for a reboot. Who wouldn’t love to see Crash Override (Johny Lee Miller) and Acid Burn (Angelina Jolie) reimagined with modern technology? No more floppy disks or plugging into pay phones… (remember pay phones?). The graphics may be laughably ancient now, but the desire to take down an evil conglomerate is a hero fantasy sans-Spandex (because Spandex is a privilege, not a right.)
The characters and the romantic sub-plot are still fantastic, and with such a technology-heavy classic, rebooting with some update equipment would bring this teenage underdog story and quotable rebellion to a whole new generation of viewers.
2 The Addams Family (1991)
The long-lasting appeal of The Addams Family lies not in its plot line, but in the incredible characters and Gothic aesthetic – something that doesn’t grow old. Despite a few other films attempting to re-create that Addams feeling (usually with Johhny Depp involved) like Dark Shadows, Sleepy Hollow and Sweeney Todd, none have reached that perfect blend of darkness and quirky humor.
Christina Ricci could even return, but as the glamorous and imposing Morticia- or as Wednesday all grown up and the new Addams family matriarch. A reboot would have to recapture the perverse and often slapstick humor, appealing to the weirdo within us all.
1 Jumanji (1995)
Earlier this year, Jumanji was announced for a reboot, and while there hasn’t been any news on the project since, it’s definitely top of the line-up. While it wouldn’t be possible to even try and replicate the incredible talents of the late Robin Williams, the story of a game that is capable of creating a nightmarish world around its players is a captivating one.
As we know that the game has been around for hundreds of years, a reboot could theoretically take place in (or involve characters from) any time period, any country, and with an almost infinite number of consequences. Are past players attempting to destroy it, or to figure out where it came from? Jumanji opens up possibilities for an entire franchise of dark and dangerous jungle magic that absolutely deserve to be explored.
Any other '90s that should be on this list? Let us know in the comments!