JNS: You have missed my point entirely. As long as you still have the text--there is still some value even in a badly acted production of Shakespeare. You cannot seriously be suggesting that the writing on DS was ever anything much more than pedestrian, are you?
And, in considering your second example, you have it exactly reversed. The original versions of The Thing (from 1951, by the way, and not 1955) is a gem--a textbook example of what you can do on a limited budget with imagination, a good script, decent acting, and good direction. (It is generally thought that Howard Hawks did a good bit of it, although he is not credited.) The Carpenter remake isn't terrible--but it's no improvement on the original.
And you prefer Terry Gilliam to Tim Burton. Well, that says it all. All I can say to that is that our tastes in this matter are diametrically opposed. Gilliam never made a film as good as Big Fish or Sleepy Hollow (in my view, Brazil is grossly overvalued), and Burton has never made a film as bad as Baron Munchhausen.
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