A list of Edgar Wright's favorite 1000 Movies per his list on Mubi on July 27th, 2016.
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…
Richard kept getting upset with me while we were watching The Dead Zone because I kept laughing at inappropriate times (I couldn't help it!). I mean, come on, just one look at this and I naturally burst out laughing.
While I am prone to prefer Cronenberg's earlier horror films over his later work (surprised, aren't you?), The Dead Zone is not quite on the same level and I'm sure it's because he decided to step out of his comfort....zone...and direct something written by someone else.
And for the record, if I had some former love interest I was hung up on and they stumbled back into my life while they were campaigning for someone like, say, Donald Trump/George Stillson, I…
Brooding, subtly intense, and fully entertaining, David Cronenberg's "The Dead Zone" is a horror-thriller powered by a single question: what sacrifices should by made to change the future? Following a man with the ability to peer into the future's darkest corners, the adaptation of Stephen King's novel is instantly gripping. Though it suffers from a final third that can not avoid descending into hokum, the film is a strong and chilling piece of work.
Following a protagonist alternately blessed and cursed with second sight, the plot chart's Christopher Walken's Johnny as he transforms from mild-mannered teacher to recluse after an accident gives him the ability to see glimpses of what has happened and what could happen. The ability makes Johnny…
I can't really put my finger on why I love this so much.
Is it because it is one of my favourite stories by King?
Is it that despite his mannerisms Walken still manages to evoke the right amount of pathos and sympathy?
Or is it perhaps Cronenberg weaving his atmosphere building magic?
Probably all of the above and the narrative string that connects them. If you allow the uncertain direction it takes to lure you in, the slightly over the top final act actually gains weight and power.
The Dead Zone was intriguing on first watch and rewarding on second, mainly because I got to see Cronenberg do what he does so well, create an atmosphere that feels 'off'.
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…
I really wish there was more to this narrative but all the respective scenes that comprise it are compelling. Though it does build to something, you don't feel a momentum. That would have really put this film over the top.
Oh hey, it's Donald Trump.
"If you had the chance to go back and kill Hitler, knowing what you know now, would you?"
3 parts sci-fi mystery , 1 part political drama all fused together in an amalgamation of awesomeness. Here we have a character more intrigued by the capabilities of his newly acquainted gift than he is afraid of what they can do. He is entrusted with a large responsibility and in that responsibility he flees at every chance he gets. Having the power to change the the future in even a minor way is not something one man should take for granted. Christopher Walken emotes just the right amount of sympathy and understanding without it feeling too overbearing, which he can do…
Martin Short should have been nominated for Best Supporting Actor. No, I'm not kidding.
This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.
It has "Dead" in the title and it's directed by David Cronenberg, but I found The Dead Zone to be surprisingly restrained considering the director and the author of the souce material. Although it's very competently made, the movie struggles with some pacing and structural issues. We don't have an established antagonist until well into the movie, and it takes even longer before there is any evidence of Stillson needing to be stopped. Johnny's mentoring of the boy feels almost like a detour in the film, having no real impact on the events of the movie. Johnny's powers work well as the driving force of the film, but lack impressive visual engagement beyond the house fire scene.
The Dead Zone won't leave many viewers feeling alenated or bored, but it lacks a lot of the luster of Cronenberg's other movies. Still recommendable to fans of psychological thrillers despite being fairly subdued.
un ottimo thriller firmato Cronenberg, con delle ovvie derive horrorifiche ed un, come al solito, eccezionale Christopher Walken. sinceramente mi aspettavo qualcosina in più sotto il profilo stilistico, but still.
Summer of the Beast film #30:
Flashes of brilliance (the vision of the house fire, "The ice...is gonna break!"), but otherwise subdued, which isn't necessarily a bad thing, but those moments make me wish both Cronenberg and Walken had cut loose a little during the rest of the movie. As is, it's a serviceable King adaptation that's paced badly (I can see why it was turned into a TV show) and some good acting from everyone involved.
Oh the tortures of forbidden, reciprocal love. Incredible movie with a sense of impending doom. This was a cronenberg x king collaboration, close to perfection. 👀🔪💕
This film was pretty cool, and the idea that Stephen King came up with was very original. It was also quite weird to see Christopher Walken as a younger man, as everything I’ve seen him in he is a wise, older man.
Anyway, this film is designed to be a horror film, but I wasn’t really scared at any points, which was a little disappointing, but the psychological aspects of it were very interesting, and that kept me intrigued for the duration.
Overall, this gets a 6.9 because it was very interesting, and also a really cool idea, but at points a bit too slow and boring for me.