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In the Hollywood of the future there's no need for actors since any star can be digitally recreated and inserted into any movie. Yet young Alis wants to dance on the silver screen. Tom tries to dissuade her, but he fears she will pursue her dream--and likely fall victim to Hollywood's seamy underside, which is all to eager to swallow up naive actresses. Then Tom begins to find Alis in the old musicals he remakes, and he has to ask himself just where the line stands between reality and the movies. --This text refers to the Mass Market Paperback edition.
Willis (Doomsday Book), a fan of old movies, uses them cleverly and thoughtfully in Remake, her fourth solo novel. Roughly 20 years into the future, computer graphics have ended live production in Hollywood. Tom, the narrator, reluctantly pillages old films for remakes starring dead actors or alters them to suit the politico-social correctness of the moment. When he meets Alis, who has come to Hollywood burning to dance in movies no longer being made, he falls hard. As in Willis's Lincoln's Dreams, while boy is obsessed with girl, she is obsessed with her purpose. Boy loses girl, then sees her, impossibly, dancing in old musicals which couldn't have been altered. After several red herrings he finds both her and an explanation, but, given her higher passion, finders aren't necessarily keepers. Willis's writing, as usual, is transparently clean and deft. She has fun playing with old film references and with the levels of illusion in a Hollywood more irreal than ever, and is discerning both about the way movies inform our imaginations, giving us roles to play, and about desire, purpose and possibility. One flaw is a scene of requited love that neither the form nor tone of this bittersweet romance can support. But if the characters are mostly stock and the sentimentality easy, this is still popular fiction at a high level, entertaining, thoughtful and often touching.
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc.
Connie Willis is undoubtedly a genius, but even geniuses have their failures. One is tempted at first to think that Remake will be one of her lesser works, even if by no means a... Read morePublished on June 8 2002 by Amazon Customer
If you're a movie nut, and moreover an MGM musicals nut who's seen most of the films excerpted in the THAT'S ENTERTAINMENT movies, and you like good speculative fiction, this is... Read morePublished on Dec 13 2000
I loved this wonderfully cynical view of the future of filmmaking, and Hollywood as a whole. The characters came to life against a mild science fiction backdrop, and the story... Read morePublished on March 24 1998