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Doctor Sleep (2019) - Movie Review

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Doctor Sleep (1987)

The Shining is a revered story the world over, both in film and literature. Stanley Kubrick’s movie infamously didn’t pass muster with author Stephen King back in 1980, so the author decided to make his own (bloody awful to this reviewer) TV miniseries. But the world disagreed and Kubrick’s not so faithful take on King’s novel cemented itself as one of the finest horror movies ever put on screen.

" It’s a terrific story, full of tragedy and evolving characters, and plenty of irksome horror"


In the world of sequels and remakes and all manner of re-everything, it would be a brave undertaking to skirt anywhere near that movie. But that’s exactly what’s just happened. It started, aptly, with the author himself—he wrote a follow up to his novel that focused on an adult Danny Torrance—spectacular novel, in fact, so when 2017’s IT stormed the box office, a film adaptation was quickly green lit.

Ewan McGregor stars as the adult Torrance, a burned out and directionless alcoholic who goes from place to place, trying to forget the horrors that his shining brought upon him. He lucks upon a man who takes a chance on him and steers his life in a healthier, happier direction. He ends up helping those in a hospice he works in to pass in comfort. He still has his shining, but has learned, with help of Dick O’Halloran’s ghost, to fight the bad ghostly visitors off and keep them away. Another messenger, Abra, a girl with powers far greater than Danny’s, finally makes real world contact when she discovers a group of ancient soul suckers—the True Knot—that travel around, torturing and murdering children with the shining. They literally eat the shining. Danny is reluctantly embroiled in Abra’s desire to stop these monsters, and, as a result, is forced to revisit his past traumas, reevaluate his long-standing fear and make peace with his own shining.

Mike Flanagan bravely (or foolishly) chose to make this a sequel to Kubrick’s film. The major bones of the novel are all here, with some things being streamlined, some changed, or eliminated entirely. It’s a terrific story, full of tragedy and evolving characters, and plenty of irksome horror and he captures it well. It’s nice to see a movie not rely of jump cuts too much to scare. He manages to depict some truly horrific scenes from the real world to the supernatural that will make you sit back in your chair a little farther. His choice to copy both the set design and camera moves of Kubrick in many, many scenes, gives this sequel a connective tissue but it may bother some and come off as unimaginative. For this reviewer, it was a welcome choice and done cleverly.Doctor Sleep (1987)

McGregor doesn’t hand in bad performances and his Danny is steady, flawed, empathetic, understated and relatable; Rebecca Fergusson also impresses as the beautiful yet monstrous Rose the Hat. But the stand out for me was Kyleigh Curran’s Abra; she is remarkable young performer with a tough gig, but pulls it off flawlessly. What doesn’t work so well is the overuse of actors standing in for Jack Nicholson and Shelly Duvall. Less would have been more in this instance. It just didn’t work; it was like watching two actors from a bad reenactment show. It actually reminded me of the shit line deliveries of the bad actor who replaced Crispin Glover in Back to the Future 2.

The music, just like some of the visuals, harken closely back to Kubrick’s film. It’s effective and will trigger the nostalgia bone. You’ll either like it or not. Again, I liked it.

This is not a scene by scene faithful adaptation. But is affecting, effective, and my favourite of the King films released in 2019. I’m taking it down a point for the way they used Jack and Wendy Torrance, but besides that, this is a must see for King lovers

4/5 beers

Doctor Sleep (1987)

Blu-ray

Blu-ray Details:

Home Video Distributor:
Available on Blu-ray

Screen Formats:
Subtitles
:
Audio:

Discs:
Region Encoding:

Doctoer Sleep

MPAA Rating: R for disturbing and violent content, some bloody images, language, nudity and drug use.
Runtime:
151 mins
Director
: Mike Flanagan
Writer:
Mike Flanagan
Cast:
Ewan McGregor, Rebecca Ferguson, Kyliegh Curran
Genre
: Horror
Tagline:
The World will Shine Again.
Memorable Movie Quote: "Just talk to the kid."
Theatrical Distributor:
Warner Bros.
Official Site:
Release Date:
http://www.doctorsleepmovie.net/
DVD/Blu-ray Release Date:

Synopsis: Years following the events of "The Shining," a now-adult Dan Torrance meets a young girl with similar powers as he tries to protect her from a cult known as The True Knot who prey on children with powers to remain immortal.

Doctor Sleep

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