I will say that I prefer remakes to contain the essence of the story but that it should bring something new to it as well. Same as music, never see the point in a note-for-note copy of a song...take a few chances, mix it up...above all put your own stamp on it.
That's my opinion as well. It's pretty much why I'm looking forward to seeing Spike Lee's remake of Oldboy
. I think his interpretation will be a pleasant surprise.