I just read the book and watched the 2004 version of the movie. I have to admit that I actually turned it off because I thought some of the acting was just terrible. Rob Lowe was a good Ben Mears, but Susan's character was not what I was picturing in my head at all. I picture more of an innocent, flirtatious type of girl.
While Rob Lowe did a good job he would not have been my first choice, Probably Johnny Depp. I would have Donald Sutherland plaing Hauers character vica versa. I though Andre Braugher did a great job, best Stephen King character he played. Of course Nick Andros was Rob Lowes shining glory. James Cromwell was awesome as Callahan and should play him in the Dt series. Of course my favorite character for him was The captain from LA Confidential, just wicked as heck.
I went out and bought this when it first came out, I liked it. Compared to the classic, it was a good remake better than alot of Mr.Kings remakes. The cast was good, editing was good, everything was good. I would watch it again mos def.
When I'd heard that Salem's Lot had been remade, I was excited because I'm a devoted Stephen King fan who can't get enough . . . however, I was concerned because I didn't know if it could be better than the original Salem's Lot. I mean, the makers would be going up against Horror Director Tobe Hooper and would have to try and put together a cast better than James Mason, David Soul, Bonnie Bedelia, and good old Reggie Nalder as the dark and menacing Kurt Barlow. Then throw in a creepy old house which resembled the Bates house along with some eerie music and you have a spooky mini-series. While the original is definitely dated, I still think it holds up quite well and continues to distribute fear all these years later. So, for me, I'll stick with the original and for good reason. I mean, who could replace James Mason as Straker and Reggie Nalser as the Master? Nalder's Barlow still gives me the creeps!!!
I just watched the remake yesterday and really liked it. I never found the original all that creepy (except for the Glick kid floating outside the window) and towards the end of the remake really started to creep me out. Vampires don't really scare me, but zombies sure do, and these vampires seemed like zombies. I really liked Donald Sutherland as Straker too.
Parts of the 2004 version I liked. For the most part, I thought all the roles were well cast. The only one I really disliked was Donald Sutherland. And it's nothing against Sutherland himself, whom I love as an actor. But the way he played Straker struck me as more of a "dirty old man" rather than the cunning keeper of the novel.
My biggest complaint of the 2004 version were the changes to the story. Mark Petrie's character, Matt Burke, Straker, Dud Rogers, and especially Father Callahan, whom the screenwriters COMPLETELY misunderstood. I don't mind movies making changes to adapt a story to the screen, but so many of the story changes to the 2004 version were complete reworkings of the characters. I didn't like that at all.