doctor sleep spoiler review

Time will be kind to Doctor Sleep, a bold, audacious, unapologetically sentimental horror film. The box office returns are paltry, and the film itself has its fair share of problems. And yet, Mike Flanagan‘s tender adaptation of Stephen King‘s novel shines because it’s so committed to embracing emotion. Stanley Kubrick’s cold, unfeeling, excellent The Shining jettisoned the sentimentality so prevalent in King’s work. Doctor Sleep attempts to reconcile this with Kubrick’s legacy.

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doctor sleep review

For all of the horrors he’s conjured up over the decades, Stephen King is really a big softie. Yes, he’s written stories about horrible, nightmarish things happening to innocent souls. But in the end, King is a writer who believes in humanity. He believes in hope. He believes in redemption. Which is probably why he was so damn furious when Stanley Kubrick adapted his novel The Shining into a film in 1980. Kubrick, brilliant artist that he was, was also the complete opposite of King. It’s unfair to claim – though many have – that Kubrick was a misanthrope with a disdain for humanity. But it’s fair to say that Stanley Kubrick’s movies were, all in all, unsentimental – an attitude that King has never ascribed to.

With all of this in mind, Mike Flanagan was facing an uphill battle when it came to adapting Doctor Sleep, King’s own sequel to The Shining, published in 2013. King’s Shining and Kubrick’s Shining share a basic framework, and several similar elements. But they’re vastly different works. And King’s Doctor Sleep is a sequel to his novel – not Kubrick’s film. What was Flanagan to do? Ignore one of the most talked-about horror movies of all time and stick with King’s text? Jettison King’s prose to remain true to Kubrick? Or find some sort of middle ground? With Doctor Sleep, Flanagan has opted for the third option. But can the diametrically opposed viewpoints of King and Kubrick truly inhabit the same space?

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the outsider trailer new

The Stephen King adaptation craze keeps on keepin’ on with The Outsider, a new HBO series base on one of the Master of Horror’s recent novels. The story concerns what appears to be an impossible murder: after a child in a small town is killed, a mountain of evidence points towards one man. The only problem is this suspect’s alibi is airtight, placing him miles away from the scene of the crime. Watch The Outsider trailer below.

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castle rock season 2 review

Castle Rock returns to Hulu with a whole new story set in the world of Stephen King. The show’s anthology format allows Castle Rock to focus on a different King-inspired tale, with all new characters, every season – and season 2 promises to dig even deeper into the prolific horror writer’s bibliography. While season 1 was only tangibly connected to King’s books – merely using familiar characters and locations – season 2 goes further, pulling storylines directly from King’s books Misery and ‘Salem’s Lot. The end result is a blend of creepy and curious. There’s plenty of spooky stuff afoot, but Castle Rock never manages to be scary. And Misery and ‘Salem’s Lot, two vastly different King novels, make for strange bedfellows.

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lisey's story cast clive owen

The Apple TV+ miniseries adaptation of Stephen King‘s Lisey’s Story has added a new cast member. Clive Owen will appear alongside Julianne Moore, whom he appeared alongside in Children of Men. Owen’s role is likely to be a bit limited since his character is dead by the time the story starts (that’s not a spoiler, I promise). King’s novel follows a novelist’s widow who discovers secrets about her dead husband.

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doctor sleep posters

Hey, did you know Doctor Sleep is a sequel to The Shining? If not, don’t worry, two new posters for the Stephen King adaptation are here to make damn sure you don’t forget. These two posters lean heavily into imagery from Stanely Kubrick’s Shining adaptation, and also plaster Stephen King’s name above the title, something that hasn’t been done for a while. But King movies are hot, hot, hot right now, so this makes sense. Check out the Doctor Sleep posters below.

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doctor sleep featurette

A new Doctor Sleep featurette gives us our best look yet at Mike Flanagan‘s sequel to The Shining. In the video below, go behind-the-scenes of the upcoming film with Flanagan, author Stephen King, and star Ewan McGregor, while also getting new looks at the recreation of the Overlook Hotel, the younger Danny Torrence, Dick Hallorann, and more.

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Movie Studios Losing Rights

With all the remakes, reboots, reimaginings and whatnot coming to theaters all the time, you might be excited to hear that some movies studios are in danger of losing the rights to some of their most valuable franchises.

The rights to Terminator, Die Hard, Who Framed Roger Rabbit, Predator, Nightmare on Elm Street, and Beetlejuice are all in danger of being snapped back by the original creators or those in charge of their estate. But why now? What has all these properties in line to possibly being snatched back? Read More »

There’s a line in The Shawshank Redemption where Morgan Freeman’s character, Red, tells us, “Prison is no fairy tale world.” Except that’s exactly what it is in this movie. Make no mistake about it: Frank Darabont’s 1994 prison drama, based on a Stephen King novella, endures as a kind of modern fairy tale, albeit one that transplants the most basic of all human emotions to the least romantic of all story settings. Instead of happening in space, like The Empire Strikes Back, this tale unfolds in a penitentiary.

Interpretations of Shawshank abound; depending on who you ask, the film might resonate as everything from a simple bromance to a biblical allegory. However, by using the prison as a canvas for a humanistic hope parable, the film managed to tap into something sublime and all-inclusive, something that cuts across demographics and appeals to people’s innermost yearning selves. Or, as Red puts it, “something so beautiful it can’t be expressed in words, and makes your heart ache because of it.”

The story of wrongfully convicted inmate Andy Dufresne, played with glassy-eyed stoicism by Tim Robbins, speaks to the imprisoned dreamer in all of us. He’s a man, Red tells us, “who crawled through a river of shit and came out clean on the other side.” Anyone who’s ever felt trapped by their circumstances, anyone who’s ever hoped for a better life, can relate to Andy’s decades-long struggle in Shawshank State Prison. As The Shawshank Redemption turns 25, it remains essential fuel for the film-lover’s soul: inspirational and heart-aching, but also perhaps richer and more multi-layered than you remember.

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The Institute TV Series

Stephen King’s latest book The Institute just hit shelves yesterday, but Hollywood didn’t waste anytime getting the series prepared for an adaptation. Television mastermind David E. Kelly, responsible for creating shows like The Practice, Boston Public and Big Little Lies, will be teaming up with Lost series director Jack Bender to turn The Institute into a limited series. Read More »