Doctor Sleep ★★★★

Director's Cut

I'm kinda glad I waited on this one just because if you watch The Shining immediately preceding it, Doctor Sleep probably feels slighter. And this is mostly true since the Doctor Sleep novel isn't as great as the original. And then of course one is directed by Kubrick and the other isn't. But really, Flannigan takes the sequel novel, twists and turns it, folds it back into the Kubrick tone and generates a fantastic sequel. One that probably doesn't need to exist at all but it does and I really dig it. I watched the directors cut so I can't compare it to the theatrical release but it didn't feel long or boring. Flannigan's use of sound design and camerawork is excellent throughout, lots of re-shoots from Kubrick's version but effectively handled. Again, the Kubrick tone is there (for the most part). The cast are excellent (couldn't believe that was Henry Thomas!) and this is likely to be appreciated more over time. It's of course not as iconic, fresh or inspired as the original but it is an extremely well crafted sequel that respects the mastery that came before.

Side note: Yes I did mention the camerawork is excellent and I stand by that. But... I've never loved Flannigan's daytime colour grading. Too green for my liking. Night scenes though are 👏

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