One example is "Cape Fear," the original version with Robert Mitchum, and "Cape Fear" with Robert De Niro. I think that De Niro tops Robert Mitchum in the fear factor: not just the tattooed body, but the overall menacing tone. I also like the way De Niro menaced and seduced the young daughter -- enough to scare all the parents in the audience.
And then there's "Dangerous Liaisons" with Glenn Close and "Valmont" with Annette Bening. Like De Niro in "Cape Fear," Glenn Close was far more menacing and colder than Annette Bening, who brought a lot more female charm and seductiveness to the role than Close did.
If you can think of more movies to compare, let me know; I'd enjoy spending the weekend watching double features.
|Robert De Niro in "Cape Fear"|
|Robert Mitchum in the earlier "Cape Fear"|
|Glenn Close in "Dangerous Liaisons"|
|Annette Bening in "Valmont"|