Doctor Sleep Movie Review
In Sept of 1974 Stephen and Tabitha King stayed at the Stanley Hotel in Estes Colorado. Mr. King had writers block and stayed in room 217. After a nightmare about his 3 year old son woke him up King had a cigarette and contemplated the dream. The Shining was born.
It became a movie in 1980 starring Jack Nicholson and Shelly Duvall. Twenty three years later in 2013 King wrote its sequel Doctor Sleep. The movie based on Kings novel hit theaters November 8.
The movie opens on a state park in Cedar Key, Fl. A little girl named Violet is vacationing with her family.The year is 1980. She decides to go pick wildflowers. At the rivers edge sits Rose the Hat. She singing and pulling petals off the flowers.
She offers Violet a flower and a magic trick. The little girl get afraid as Rose gypsy caravan closes in around her. They descend on the girl.
A short distance away Danny Torrance (Roger Dale Floyd)is in bed asleep he is dreaming of being back in the Overlook Hotel. He’s riding his bike through the corridors. He comes to room 237. The door opens to the rotting naked old hag. Danny is jolted awake. He pads toward the bathroom in his pj’s were the grotesque woman sits in the bath tub grinning at him. He pees his pants His mother Wendy Torrance (Alex Essoe) runs to comfort him. He refuses to talk.
The next day Dick Halloran (Carl Lumbly) has a talk with Danny about the shining. He tells the boy of his own experience and instructs the boy to memorize the box he hands him. Danny will one by one lock away the demons that haunt him from the Overlook.
A 5-year-old Abra Stone (Kylie Curran) is taking in a magic show for her birthday. After the magician insults her Abra telekinesis all the spoons to hang on the kitchen ceiling. The parents are afraid of their daughter’s powers.
Dan Torrance is an alcoholic who picked up a young mother in a bar the night before after a fight with her old man. They go back to ghetto apartment for sex and drugs. He wakes up with her naked and covered in vomit beside him . She has robbed him of his cash so he helps himself to hers. Her child wakes up and toddles to Dan. He’s alarmed and puts the toddler with its sleeping mom.
After another drunk night in a freezing railway car Dan heads to Frazier, New Hampshire where he meets Billy (Cliff Curtis) who helps him get back on his feet with a job and a roof over his head.
Meanwhile in Long Island N.Y. Snakebite Andy an underage 15-year-old has the shining as well. She lures pedophiles to a movie theatre. She makes them fall asleep at her command then robs them. She leaves cuts resembling rattlesnake bites.
Rose (Rebecca Ferguson) and Crow Daddy (Zahn Mclaron) are observing her before she leaves she is kidnapped by the couple. She awakes in Rose’s camper. Rose asks her to join the Knot. That night they hold the ceremony beach side led by Grandpa Flick (Carel Struycken). She screams in agony as she is turned.
Dan meanwhile, is an orderly at a hospice. A cat named Azzy predicts who is going to die by going into patients rooms and lying on their beds. Dan assures the patient’s to not fear death and helps their transition to the other side which earns him the name Doctor Sleep.
That night after a hard night of drinking Dan sees the mother and child he met earlier dead. Flies are crawling on their faces. He falls out of bed shaking. He enters Alcoholics Anonymous the next day.
For eight years Dan stays sober. Abra becomes a teenager. She sees Rose and the Knot kill Bradley Trevor (Jacob Tremblay) in Iowa after a baseball game. They bury his lifeless body in a abandon plant. Abra sees it and reaches out to Dan first telepathically then in person. Which draws Rose’s attention. The Knot must find the one big catch or they will slowly die or as Rose calls it cycling.
At this point in the movie the studio deviates from the book. There was never a showdown in a state park. Billy doesn’t die. Dan really is Abra’s uncle the product of an affair Jack and Abra’s grandmother had before his demise. Abra’s grandma is dying of cancer. Dan absorbs the cancer in his body and diseases the Knot, Rose and the inhabitants of the Overlook Hotel. Jack ultimately makes up with Dan and destroys the Overlook. While Rose’s hat blows away in the wind. That was King’s version but Hollywood rewrote it differently.
It was acted well and the studio did find actors and actresses that did resemble the original cast of The Shining. I can’t help but wonder if Mr.King will write another installment to The Shining I don’t think this should be the end since evil never really dies.
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