Temptation Island 2.0
It might have been the more apt title, actually, for the benefit of those who are so strict about originals and remakes, and imagine faithfulness to be about keeping to the level of copy. But thereâ€™s no crossing the same river twice, and itâ€™s a foregone conclusion that every remake is a retelling, every retelling a different story altogether.
And so the question for Chris Martinezâ€™s remake of Joey Gosiengfiaoâ€™s 1981 Temptation Island (Regal Films and GMA Films) is: does it still work? Is campiness something weâ€™d know to be an exaggeration? Would campiness work with this set of five girls, three guys, and a gay man?
Could Martinez make it work?
He apparently can, at least if we take the laughter in that almost filled theater as an indication of success. I myself was familiar with the lines from the original and still found myself laughing, sometimes too loudly or just earlier than the rest of the audience in that cinema. Because thereâ€™s a learning curve here, during which the audience seem to warm up to the idea of exaggeration and extremes, the kind that campy relies on.