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The Dark Tower by Stephen King is an expansive story that spans 7
books, telling Roland the Gunslinger's journey to the Tower; involving
different genres, many characters, many worlds - a big lore.
At a certain point whether you have read the series or not is probably irrelevant. If you haven't read the books, I would imagine the movie just will feel flat and lifeless, with only a few scenes from McConaughey standing out. There's very little plot and character development, which comes across as a lump of clichés. If you have read the books, you'll likely find the movie a spectacular failure, wondering how the writers managed to dumb down such promising material to a 95 minute generic action movie, and making an actor like Idris Elba overact in a character that should have endless potential. The final result is so hollow and narrow, if you have watched the trailer, you may just count yourself as having seen the whole thing.
If you are intrigued by the story, skip this movie, and give the first book of the series a go.
My wife and I went to see this movie last night. This is probably the
only review I've done in the past 30 years and that's because I believe
this was "UNFAIRLY REVIEWED BY CRITICS", so I'm hoping you'll give this
movie a shot after reading what I have to say.
I almost didn't go because the movie review in USA Today newspaper only gave it one star. Some of the user reviews here didn't seem very enthusiastic about the movie either. I'm 67, retired, and a King fan (I've red The Dark Tower books). My wife is 70, retired and not a King fan (she hasn't read any of the Dark Tower books). Just to provide some additional perspective some of the movies we've seen so far this year and how we rated (in chronological order) The Founder 5, A Dog's Purpose 5, John Wick Chapter 2 5, Logan 6, Kong; Skull Island 7, Beauty and the Beast 7, Power Rangers 5, The Fate of the Furious 8, Guardians of the Galaxy 2nd Vol 8, Pirates of the Caribbean 4, Wonder Woman 9, The Mummy 5, Spider Man 6, War for the Planet of the Apes 8, and The Dark Tower 8.
I was worried standing in line to see the movie so when the previous show got out I started asking people (must have been close to 20) if the liked the show. (Would have asked more except my wife was feeling a little embarrassed.) Everyone said a hearty "Yes" except for one couple who shook their heads and said, "It wasn't like the books" and gave it a thumbs down. After that I was encouraged and looked forward to seeing the movie. I figured most of the critics were slamming it because it didn't follow the books closely. Frankly, from what I've seen, King books have always had a tough time being translated to the big screen.
Although this movie didn't follow the books "right on" the main gist of the plot and characters were there so I wasn't disappointed. Contrary to what some other critical and user reviews have said, the plot was cohesive, well thought out, and had similarities to the book. The acting was very well done all around, the action was excellent and was not jittery or blurry. It's easy to connect to the characters and the emotional points of the plot.
I started with a list of movies we've seen and how we rated so you can compare how similar, or not, your ratings were to put in perspective how likely you'd be to enjoy this movie. I wonder if critics and some users go to movies for reasons different from ours. We just want to see fun, entertaining, well acted movies that have been filmed and directed by good professionals. The ONLY ding we could give this movie was that it wasn't done in a manner similar to "Lord of the Rings" where it's carried out over 3 films with greater detail and depth. That might have been better, but maybe not. Regardless, I wish critics would at least rate movies like this with 2 stars as long as they're fun, well done and entertaining. There's no way this was a one-star film.
Unless you really need the movie to follow all the outline and plot of the books, I'm extremely confident you'll enjoy this movie. It's well worth going to the show to see. You'll like it!
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Being a tower junkie for over a decade, I honestly don't have much
expectation on this movie adaption. Much of The Dark Tower series'
charm comes from Stephen King's narration, which doesn't easily convert
into the visual language of movies. Since the bar was set extremely
low, I thought there's no way I could be disappointed in the cinema.
But dude, this Nikolaj Arcel guy has one heck of a way to prove me wrong.
Judging by what's revealed in trailers, I thought this one should cover The Gungslinger and *part of* Drawing of the Three, starting a whole franchise, with more installments to follow. But no. The director took pieces from all seven Tower books, glued them onto a self-made storyline (a lame one), and called it a day. Yes, you're reading it right. This is the whole thing, the entire package. What kind of idiotic mind ever thinks of packing SEVEN novels into ONE SINGLE movie?
Within 1.5 hours you will see Roland Deschain fighting the army of the Man in Black (vol IV), having his ass handed to him, embarking on a chase (vol I), picking up Jake Chambers from New York (vol I & II), although the Jake in this movie is really Jake Chambers and Patrick Danville rolled into one (vol VII). They fooled around in Mid-world for a bit, then discovered Algul Siento (vol VI), where the Man in Black's force are hording up breakers to destroy the Dark Tower. In order the thwart the evil operation, they went to this village that looks suspiciously like Calla Bryan Sturgis (vol V), activated a portal to Keystone Earth, trying to infiltrate en route the can-toi headquarter, a restaurant called Dixie Pig (vol VII). Then there comes a ton of pew pew pew and bang bang bang. All baddies died, including the Man in Black (vol WTF). They destroyed the tower-breaking machine, and lived happily ever after (vol WTF). End of story.
No Oy. No Eddie Dean. No Susannah Holmes. Even the Crimson King is axed, while references to him can be seen everywhere in the movie. This version of Roland didn't even attempt to enter the Tower.
I've thought hard, for nice things to say about this movie, and came up with only the following: 1. All sorts of creative reloading techniques.
2. Walter O'Dim is super duper kickass cool in the movie adaption, way cooler than in the original novels. Matthew McConaughey did portray the "Walking Dude" true to his name, always on the move, casually passing through lives and worlds, leaving havoc in his wake.
Otherwise... it's a dozen bucks wasted. Should have donated it to the charity.
BTW, IMDb should change its rating mechanism a bit, allowing us to give a 0 rate.
Oh, there's one nice touch at the very beginning of the movie. Among the names and logos of producers and investors, there's a screen featuring "Tet Corporation", accompanied by a turtle and a rose, kindling false hope in me.
This film reminds me of the situation surrounding the making of The
Lord of the Rings trilogy. The film was turned down by one studio after
another as none of the studios wanted to commit to making 3 films. One
of the studios actually agreed to make it, but only if the script was
condensed into a single film. Thankfully the people that had the rights
and were pitching the films understood that the idea of translating the
entire Lord of the Rings trilogy in a single film was a laughable
proposition and the end result would have been a terrible film that
would ultimately do no justice to the source material. They were
willing to bring it down to 2 films instead of 3, but the studio wound
up turning them down.
The final studio they approached was New Line and because all of the other studios had turned them down, they pitched it to New Line as a 2 film series as opposed to a trilogy. Amazingly, New Line agreed to take on the project but only if it was made as a trilogy. Clearly someone at New Line smartly recognized that Lord of the Rings was an amazing project and the only way to do it right was to make it a trilogy. And anyone who has read the Lord of the Rings trilogy understands first hand that there is just way too much material to be condensed into a single film or even 2 films. And as we all know, the films wound up being a HUGE success and made New Line billions. At last look the Trilogy had made more than 6 billion world wide.
Like Lord of the Rings, The Dark Tower series is just way too big to be condensed into a single film. Any film studio that was legitimately serious about doing the Dark Tower series justice would understand that right out of the gate. The Lord of the Rings was 3 books and the running time for the extended versions of the films was 682 minutes or just over 11 hours long. .The Dark Tower series is 8 books and many of them are BIG books. Anyone who thinks that amount of material can be condensed into a single film is living in la la land. I knew going in that this was going to be a cheap attempt at making money off of Stephen Kings name and the popularity of The Dark Tower series and that's exactly what it was. The Dark Tower series is one of my all time favorite book series, as is Lord of the Rings, and this film is literally a bad joke compared to the source material. How they got Matthew McConaughey to sign on to this film when he has had such an amazing run the last 4-5 years is simply beyond my understanding. I will never understand how such an amazing writer has had so many terrible films made from his books.
Bottom line - this was a terrible film, one that does no justice to the source material at all. If your a fan of the Dark Tower books, do yourself a HUGE favor and skip this film. Its like a bad joke of the Dark Tower universe. Everyone involved with this film should be ashamed of being a part of it. The only reason I saw it is because I have a nephew than basically begged me to take him to see it and I have to admit, part of me was curious to see just how bad it really was and in that regard it didn't disappoint. It was just as bad as I expected it to be. This is Hollywood garbage, nothing more and nothing less. Do yourself a favor and put your money elsewhere.
You have Idris Elba, Matthew McConaughey 8 books of material, and you put together a 95 minute movie? I absolutely hate that critics have to hold their reviews on these movies so the public cannot be forewarned. Its like restaurant critics not being able to tell you the food is dog meat until after you place your order. Then there are those fans who loved the books, so they delude themselves into thinking the movie is good enough. Frankly the history of Stephen King material and film is a mixed bag. The Shining is obviously superior, but when's the last time you dug out Dreamcatcher? It just continues to shock me how inept some of these productions are.
Since when we judge movies based on books! Those two are totally different experiences. I absolutely loved this movie. Simply, one of my favorites this summer and I would never ever listen to critics again. I went to watch other movies based on reviews and left Dark Tower till the end and man I wish I watched Dark Tower first. I simply can't wait till the next one. I hope there will be more than one!
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
For the fans of the books who didn't like the variance from the movies
did you not read or look in to the movie at all before you went? There
are a lot of interviews with the cast and King that tell you this is a
total retelling of Roland's next trip through the door not just a line
by line script made of the books. I think it lays out very nicely a
groundwork for what is yet to come. I would much rather see a new
journey than the one I have read and listened to so many times before.
These are great characters and they deserve a new journey and I can't
wait to see what it brings this time. So many great references to what
is yet to come.
Please make the miniseries and I can't wait for the next movie!
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
I loved The Dark Tower, I think the movie was entertaining and I loved the story. Idris Elba and Tom Taylor were awesome together and played well together. I liked the way they went from New York to Africa and back and forth. The look of the film, the cinematography was amazing. I do not see why people would not like this movie. People are always going to have a problem with book series and remakes because it seems like nobody can ever get it perfect. I did not read the books and did not know what this movie was about and I loved it. Matthew was great as the villain and I think Claudia Kim is beautiful. If you haven't seen The Dark Tower, just give it a chance. This film does not start out slow either it gets right to the story. Go see it!
At first, when I decided to try watch this kind of 'genre', I thought it was just another ordinary sci-fi story that will just make me feel bored. But from the beginning of the movie, it started to catch my attention that makes me crave to know more about it. The more I crave to know, the story become so damn interesting! Yeah, I must say that from my point of view, the story line is not cliché and it has its own 'recipe' that stand out from one another. The idea is fresh and I like the way they blend fantasy and reality to make it as a new flavor in film history. I don't understand why most people critics about this movie but in my opinion, this type of movie is something that deserve 10/10. The Dark Tower - the best movie I watch so far in 2017
I absolutely loved it. I've waited so many years to see Roland the
Gunslinger on the movie screen, and he didn't disappoint.
This movie was marketed incorrectly; it is not The Dark Tower, it is The Dark Tower Chapter 8 (an optional chapter). You can watch this chapter of the story without reading the others as it stands alone outside of the saga detailed in the books.
You should watch it even just for the fact that it is the only movie so far set in the universe outside of ours that links all of Stephen King's works together. My brother and father have never read any of the books, and we just got back from the cinema - we all enjoyed it.
Good fun. I'm not surprised to see this film has suffered from harsh criticism, mainly revolving around the fact it is not faithful to the original story, but the creators of this film are very clear in their intentions and deliberately presented a message to the existing readers and fans within the trailers of what to expect. Anyone who read all of the books in order will understand why this film is different, and how it fits in to the saga.
I thoroughly enjoyed this slightly absurd and visually awesome Stephen King horror/adventure movie, it was great.
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