x Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 26 July 2017

Other classic tales that could be retold with a modern twist

We consider a few other stories of old that could get a similar rejig for 21st-century audiences.

In cinemas today, Snow White and the Huntsman sees the classic fairy tale of mirrors, enchanted apples and little men with daft names given a somewhat darker twist. Expect less hi-ho-ing and off-to-work-we’re-going and more violence with axes. Alex Ritman considers a few other stories of old that could get a similar rejig for 21st-century audiences.

Codename: Three Bears

Baby Bear, Mother Bear and Father Bear, the last three remaining specimens from a failed Cold War military experiment to develop super-strong animal warriors capable of working behind Russian lines, have escaped from an underground bunker in Nevada and are heading directly towards Las Vegas. Wanting the problem sorted as quickly and as quietly as possible, the Pentagon opts not for full army interception, but persuades the tough-talking former special forces agent Dwayne Goldilocks to come out of retirement and hunt them down in a thrilling all-action chase across the Great Basin.

Jack Bauer and the Beanstalk

Does this really need any more explanation? OK, let's give it a go. Having bought some plutonium-enriched magic beans from a disgruntled former KGB agent, the warlord of a fictitious breakaway Soviet state has grown a beanstalk leading to the home of a powerful arms dealer in the sky. Jack Bauer has just 24 hours to destroy the beanstalk and neutralise the threat of all-out world war before this rogue terrorist can get his hands on the famed warhead-laying hen and the deadly HARP automatic nuclear missile system. Naturally, Bauer's daughter is kidnapped somewhere along the way.

Dick Whittington of Dubai

The classic rags-to-riches folk tale gets a modern-day revamp, moving from 14th-century England to 21st-century UAE. When Richard Whittington finds himself out of a job in recession-hit Britain, he packs up his worldly belongings and heads to Dubai, hearing that the streets are paved with gold. Things at first don't turn out as he'd hoped, with visa troubles and encounters with a series of unscrupulous landlords. Whittington decides to give it up and return to the UK, but as he goes to leave, he hears the sound of a particularly loud car horn from the Sheikh Zayed Road. Believing it to be calling his name, he chooses to stay. Years later, Richard Whittington PR is among the biggest public relations companies across the whole of the city and our hero drives a large 4x4.

The Ugly Duckling: Vengeance

Fifteen years have passed since Alice Swann left Summer Sweet Valley Heights High, but the mental scars from her years labelled "Queen Dork" and being the bullies' main target haven't healed. Now a successful businesswoman, six-time Sports Illustrated cover model and a member of an elite commando fighting squad, she returns to her hometown with a vast arsenal of weaponry hoping to exact deadly punishment on her former tormentors and banish the demons for good.

aritman@thenational.ae