Using They Shoot Pictures list of top directors and combining it with IMDb's rankings I have come up with this…
The Dead Zone
In his mind, he has the power to see the future. In his hands, he has the power to change it.
Johnny Smith is a schoolteacher with his whole life ahead of him but, after leaving his fiancee's home one night, is involved in a car crash which leaves him in a coma for 5 years. When he wakes, he discovers he has an ability to see into the past, present and future life of anyone with whom he comes into physical contact.
Stephen King + David Cronenberg + Christopher Walken = something I'm probably going to dig.
And dig it I did. It's a pretty subdued outing from all three, only getting super freaky deaky a couple of times but being solidly entertaining throughout.
But isn't what Martin Sheen did at the end totally ridiculous? I mean, I laughed very hard, but I'm not sure I was supposed to. (And, yes, I realize that laughing probably makes me a terrible person.)
I couldn't remember if I'd seen Dead Zone or not. That’s not necessarily a comment on its forgetability. One thing that I did remember though, thanks to a reminder by my LB friend Rick, was the SNL skit when Walken hosted. That was top of mind throughout the viewing, and I couldn’t help but smirk every time Walken did his little ‘twitch’. But before Christopher even got to twitchin’, my jaw dropped at the opening classroom scene where he’s reading Poe. My God .. THAT’S where all those zillions of youtube video of ‘Christopher Walken reads …’ came from. Now I’m seriously smirking. Not a good start for a horror film.
We Canadians sometimes eat our young. There is a…
Actually, this is not that weird. It doesn't even strike me as horror. More like a supernatural drama/thriller. Nevertheless, we still get to see a guy stabbing his face with a pair of scissors.... with no hands even! Gotta love Cronenberg. The Dead Zone tells the story of Johnny Smith, a man who has the ability to see someone's past, present or future just by touching that person. That's the supernatural part. He is able to do this after he woke up from a 5-year coma caused by a car accident (yet another crash from Cronenberg; every one of them is different though, props for that). He has to cope with his newly found ability and with the…
When people talk about Stephen King movie adaptations, they invariably talk about "The Shining" or " The Shawshank Redemption". King's books and short stories have been a gold mine for the studios as the Maine resident's output over the years has been prolific. For every great film however there have been 3-4 stinkers that simply haven't transferred well to the screen. David Cronenberg's " The Dead Zone" however is one of the best of his eighties heyday of shockers.
Christopher Walken has always been good value for money and when it comes to weird, he fits perfectly with Mr Cronenberg's odd aesthetic. As a man who awakes from a 5-year coma to find he has an ability to see the…
I should not have watched this as an October horror film because it isn't horror at all as far as I can tell. It is a thriller about someone who develops psychic powers, something that was all the rage in the made-for-tv movies of the week back then. If you can get beyond the obvious 80s feel of the film and the somewhat awkward pacing and script, Dead Zone offers a fairly decent thriller. Perhaps I should say drama, because by today's standards it isn't really a thriller until near the end.
It is a surprisingly very calm drama even though the score wants you to think it is hyper tense. There is something nice about the way the film…
The Dead Zone was one of the few novels I hadn't read by King, so after doing so it was time to rewatch Cronenberg's adaptation of it. I liked it more this time round and it surpasses the book in one important aspect. Efficiency in storytelling.
King's book, though entertaining, is a rather long winded affair, focussing on trivial minutiae that aren't relevant to the story. It is also a strangely distant book. As a reader you never get fully involved in the proceedings. Apparently, King's script suffered from the same problems, which bothered Cronenberg. Without doing any of the writing himself, he still managed to steer the scriptwriters in the direction he wanted. He wanted this story to be…
totally disjointed - almost like two separate films in one - but still rather enticing. both king and cronenberg have such distinct voices, though, and i was disappointed that king's shines through so much more than the latter, as i think cronenberg could have made this much more compelling were he able to put his own spin on it.
A film in search of a television show. The narrative is very disjointed and episodic in a way that does a disservice to the clever hook. The end of the film finally gets to a point that should have been arrived at in the first 30 minutes of the film. It is interesting enough that I might check out the television show.
35mm Print. Like Scanners, I saw this as part of a triple Cronenberg feature presented on print by some of my favorite people at Exhumed Films (look 'em up if you don't know them already). For me, I know Cronenberg's career starting with Scanners - a film that I thoroughly enjoyed but felt like it had its share of false notes and missteps. The Dead Zone corrects many of those faults, especially with the wonderful casting of Martin Sheen and Christopher Walken. The script is tightly written in terms of dialogue and character, but I would have been interested in seeing more of a "earned" ending or rather an earned follow up to the ending. Either way, this is definitely my second favorite King adaptation.
Also, how do I get that Time Magazine cover on a T-Shirt?
Gun-for-hire Cronenberg directs this admirably, but it amounts to little more than a (typically) sub-par early 80s King adaptation. Can't get over how lethargically prosaic it plays the messianic-hero-who-must-succumb-to-an-act-of-martyrdom card. Walken's "the ice....is gonna break" line still rocks the house, though. Shame the leading roles dried up.
(File this alongside Christine, Creepshow, Cat's Eye, Children of the Corn, etc. under "interesting concept, lousy/m'eh execution.)
Just OK. Felt like a series of short films more than one cohesive movie.
Stephen King works make better movies than they make books, and the earlier books make the best films of all.
Random thoughts in no particular order which I couldn't turn into a meaningful narrative if I tried:
The first dozen films I saw with Herbert Lom were the Pink Panther Strikes Again and The Revenge of the Pink Panther six times each. I thought he was the best thing in them (still do) and I can no longer watch him without seeing his eye twitch and hearing him cursing Clouseau. I was glad that he was pretty much only in the first half.
Cronenburg has never been particularly good at human emotions. Couple that with Stephen King and you're not…
So-So Steven King adaptation featuring Christopher Walken as a psychic ex teacher. Directed by David Cronenberg and featuring some ho hum 80's style sinister music.
Most interesting point
Walken's character repeatedly talks about the Headless Horseman of Sleepy Hollow- He would go on to play said character sixteen years later-Was he physic in real life?
Cronenberg's many strengths do not generally include particularly strong plotting - which is why this film is so darn good. The plot's already been taken care of, and Cronenberg's moody direction, Walken's powerful performance, and Kamen's sad-scary score mix together to create wonderful genre cinema.
N'ayant pas lu le livre, je ne vais critiquer que le film en lui même et non l'adaptation. J'ai donc beaucoup aimé ce film, je suis rentré dans l'histoire très rapidement. La mise en scène typiquement cronenberienne a encore fait son effet. De plus, la présence de Christopher Walken au casting est un atout conséquent tant celui ci apporte de la prestance et du charisme à son personnage, déjà bien écrit. L'ambiance de ce film très 80's marche bien et les différentes intrigues sont parfaitement bien gérées, en même temps, quand on sait que ça vient de Stephen King, ça ne nous étonne même pas. Enfin, la musique m'a beaucoup plu, en phase avec la tonalité du film, les compositions…
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This list is the Letterboxd version of The Oxford History of World Cinema.
The book celebrates and chronicles over one…
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