Did you know 'Oxford Blues' was a remake?
You know all the guff we give Hollywood for giving us remakes of our '80s classics? What if I told you that dozens of movies we loved in our decade were actually remakes themselves?
Take 1984's Oxford Blues, starring Rob Lowe. Oh no, it's not a "classic" per se, but chances are that most of us made time to watch it on HBO back in the day. Did you know that Oxford Blues is actually a remake of a 1938 movie called A Yank at Oxford?
In the 1984 movie, Lowe stars as a Vegas casino worker who raises enough cash to go to college in England - Oxford University to be exact. Turns out his dream isn't entirely academic: The reason reason he's going there is to pursue the woman of his dreams, a British "royal" of sorts who is also attending Oxford.
The 1938 movie A Yank at Oxford has a similar plot. It starred Robert Taylor as an American athlete who gets a scholarship to attend Oxford. It also marked a very early screen appearance for actress Vivian Leigh. Both movies involve boat racing, a girl and culture clashes, and both movies end on a note of redemption for the American.
One interesting footnote about A Yank at Oxford is that the writer F. Scott Fitzgerald reportedly spent several weeks polishing the script and tweaking the dialog.
Oxford Blues was a bust with theater audiences and critics. It has a 25 percent audience rating at Rotten Tomatoes. It's probably best known for pairing Lowe and Ally Sheedy, who would co-star again the following year in St. Elmo's Fire.
If you want to catch Oxford Blues, it's currently available for rent on Amazon's video service.