Friday, October 30, 2020

31 Days of Halloween - Day 30 - Movie

Dan Torrance (Ewan McGregor) haunted by his childhood experiences at the Overlook Hotel is a wreck of a man trying to put his life together. He takes a job at a hospice where he is able to to his his shining to help send the dying peacefully on their way.  He finds himself in psychic contact with Abra  (Kyliegh Curran)teenage girl also possessing the shining. The two seem destined to never meet until terrible events become known to Abra. A group calling itself The True Knot is crisscrossing the country feeding on children who shine, and now they have Abra in their sites.

Doctor Sleep (2019), based on the novel by Stephen King is a sequel to The Shining. I liked the book quite a lot, even though I went into it thinking The Shining didn't really require a sequel, and still skeptical when Dan Torrance ended up having his life impacted by yet another type of supernatural beings, but King really pulled it off. Mike Flanagan, who wrote and directed this film adaptation realized that more people would be familiar with the movie version of The Shining than the novel version, so chose to adapt this sequel to fit Kubrick's movie. Kubrick made some changes to King's story that made a straight up adaptation of King's sequel to his own book impossible, but Flanagan is to be commended for finding ways to incorporate scenes from King's sequel into this adaptation that remain true to the spirit of King's book and Kubrick's movie. Flanagan was also able to replicate authentically sets and costumes from the 1980 film and even threw in a number of Easter eggs to King's Dark Tower series of books, and a nod to Frankenstein (1931).

The heart of this film is its characters and the actors portraying them. This is an exceptional cast, and their performances in this completely engrossing and carefully paced film make this a must watch. I've seen this movie three times now, and it is one of my favorite genre films of recent years.

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