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 Posted:   Aug 29, 2014 - 4:05 PM   
 By:   Richard-W   (Member)

I haven't seen all his films. I'd be suspicious of anyone who has. SLEEPWALKERS, THE STAND and IT are in the to-watch pile.

The original CARRIE and the original THE SHINING had their moments, but the creep factor was highest for me in IN THE MOUTH OF MADNESS. The latter reminded me of The Twilight Zone. It was in the Zone, so to speak, so it gets higher marks. I'm a big fan of the original SALEM'S LOT and of NEEDFUL THINGS. SILVER BULLET was okay. ROSE RED was pretty good but tapered off into a disappointment although it did have Nancy Travis. I could spend all day watching Nancy Travis. But CHRISTINE, CUJO, FIRESTARTER and DESPERATION were just average. The mini-series remake of THE SHINING was below average, although it did have Rebecca deMornay. I could watch Rebecca all day. Unfortunately, she got less screen time than Steve Webber. STORM OF THE CENTURY took too long to arrive but ended well.

So CARRIE, THE SHINING and IN THE MOUTH OF MADNESS are the scariest Stephen King films I've seen with SALEM'S LOT being a classic.

 
 
 Posted:   Aug 29, 2014 - 4:37 PM   
 By:   MikeP   (Member)

I haven't seen all his films. I'd be suspicious of anyone who has. SLEEPWALKERS, THE STAND and IT are in the to-watch pile.

The original CARRIE and the original THE SHINING had their moments, but the creep factor was highest for me in IN THE MOUTH OF MADNESS. The latter reminded me of The Twilight Zone. It was in the Zone, so to speak, so it gets higher marks. I'm a big fan of the original SALEM'S LOT and of NEEDFUL THINGS. SILVER BULLET was okay. ROSE RED was pretty good but tapered off into a disappointment although it did have Nancy Travis. I could spend all day watching Nancy Travis. But CHRISTINE, CUJO, FIRESTARTER and DESPERATION were just average. The mini-series remake of THE SHINING was below average, although it did have Rebecca deMornay. I could watch Rebecca all day. Unfortunately, she got less screen time than Steve Webber. STORM OF THE CENTURY took too long to arrive but ended well.

So CARRIE, THE SHINING and IN THE MOUTH OF MADNESS are the scariest Stephen King films I've seen with SALEM'S LOT being a classic.



In the Mouth Of Madness isn't connected to King. It was an original script by Mike DeLuca for the Carpenter movie. I'm hard pressed to name a really scary movie based on King's work. The Shining was screwed over both times. The best films of his work have been the more non-horror type stuff.

Storm Of The Century is one of my favorites though. It IS a slow burn but builds to a tremendous finale, that last hour was wrenching.

 
 
 Posted:   Aug 29, 2014 - 4:53 PM   
 By:   Kev McGann   (Member)

Pet Sematary is the one that spooked me the most (mainly those deformed sister flashbacks).
The original TV Salem's Lot offered some good chills too.
I also know someone who was freaked out by Pennywise the Clown in the IT telly show but never
quite got that myself.

 
 
 Posted:   Aug 29, 2014 - 4:57 PM   
 By:   Kev McGann   (Member)

Darabont's MIST aint bad either.

 
 
 Posted:   Aug 30, 2014 - 12:30 AM   
 By:   Richard-W   (Member)

Oops. I stand corrected on IN THE MOUTH OF MADNESS.

Watched SLEEPWALKERS (1992) on blu-ray tonight. I didn't know it was a riff on CAT PEOPLE with people morphing into cats and boys sleeping with their moms. I dislike cats. They make me break out in hives. Attractive cast. I could watch Madchin Amick all day. How did Alice Krige become typecast in weird roles? The morphing effect was smoothly done. But the film is overly contrived. It isn't good enough and it isn't scary even though it has surprises. I rate it average.

 
 
 Posted:   Aug 30, 2014 - 12:35 AM   
 By:   Richard-W   (Member)

... I'm hard pressed to name a really scary movie based on King's work. The Shining was screwed over both times. The best films of his work have been the more non-horror type stuff....


How did THE SHINING get screwed over both times? The second time, Stephen King had his way with it. I mean he had creative control, including director approval and he wrote the script.

 
 Posted:   Aug 30, 2014 - 12:36 AM   
 By:   Francis   (Member)

Loving your King-related threads Richard wink

Yes, In The Mouth Of Madness hints at King though most people would say that the movie (and its author) is more inspired by Lovecraft.

With Stephen King movies it's actually amazing how many of them are not that scary at all. The ones I'd say are the most scary:

1. Pet Sematary (1989)

There is a lot to be creeped out by in this one; Zelda (don't ask), Pascow, Church, ... all scary characters and they aren't even the main focus, the movie is filled with scary backstory (beautifully recanted by Fred Gwynne) as well as horrific sequences. Last but not least it has one of the scariest horror scores ever by Goldenthal.

2. It (1990)

Pennywise played by Tim Curry is one of King's most memorable monsters, clowns freak me out man.

3. Misery (1990)

Probably King's most scary movie that doesn't rely on the supernatural, the real terror here is being held captive by a crazy fanatic played excellently by Kathy Bates and its her performance that provides the most chills.

4. The Shining (1980)

One of the more iconic King adaptations, not a total homerun for me, but definitely has enough creepy material and ideas, though the main criticism for Kubrick's adaptation seems to be that most people don't find it that scary and he couldn't create much of a mood. I disagree.

5. The Mist (2007)

The irony with this one has to be that some of the people taking refuge in the local supermarket are scarier than the monsters attacking them from the outside.

6. The Dead Zone (1983)

Though the premonitions of Christopher Walken's character are eerie, it's mostly the side story with a serial killer that provides the biggest scare(s) in this one.

7. Salem's Lot (1979)

See Salem's Lot thread big grin

8. Silver Bullet (1985)

This one scared the bejeezus out of me when I was a kid, same like Salem's Lot. It might not have held up that good with its 80s cheese factor but there are still scary moments.

9. Carrie (1976)

Maybe the 70s vibe don't date it as well either, but the performances make up for it.

10. The Dark Half (1993)

George Romero gets King's intent here and from what has to be one of the most amazing opening sequences to set up the villain, it's still a scary slasher movie that rises above its competitors. Also, hauntingly beautiful score by Chris Young sets the mood just right.

 
 
 Posted:   Aug 30, 2014 - 2:16 PM   
 By:   MikeP   (Member)

... I'm hard pressed to name a really scary movie based on King's work. The Shining was screwed over both times. The best films of his work have been the more non-horror type stuff....


How did THE SHINING get screwed over both times? The second time, Stephen King had his way with it. I mean he had creative control, including director approval and he wrote the script.



The first time Kubrick admitted to King he had no real interest the type of horror / ghost story the original novel told and it shows, and while the movie has some very effective scenes, Kubrick and Nicholson played it too much hammy comedy. Even in the film's most chilling scene, with Jack talking to Grady in the restroom, Nicholson's performance almost derails the sequence. Nicholson was in his prime around that time, it was only a few years after Chinatown, but his acting job felt like someone doing an imitation of Jack Nicholson.

Some parts of the book couldn't be done properly with the effects at the time, so understandably there were changes ( bye bye hedge animals ). But Shelly Duvall, the young actor who played Danny, Jack's fate... he, um....sits down and freezes to death... all add up to a big WTF ?

King's TV version, while more faithful to the book, again avoided the garden hedge animals, and tacked on a horrible, horrible sappy finale big grin That's my main frustration with King's TV adaptation.

Both versions had some great moments, but for me both botched the job to a degree, .

 
 Posted:   Aug 30, 2014 - 5:53 PM   
 By:   SBD   (Member)

Oops. I stand corrected on IN THE MOUTH OF MADNESS.

Watched SLEEPWALKERS (1992) on blu-ray tonight. I didn't know it was a riff on CAT PEOPLE with people morphing into cats and boys sleeping with their moms. I dislike cats. They make me break out in hives. Attractive cast. I could watch Madchin Amick all day. How did Alice Krige become typecast in weird roles? The morphing effect was smoothly done. But the film is overly contrived. It isn't good enough and it isn't scary even though it has surprises. I rate it average.


Much like the call from the governor coming too late.

If only I'd found this thread earlier, I could've warned you away from SLEEPWALKERS. I caught it on Chiller a while back. Okay, did King purposely make every character in the movie a freaking moron, or is it just me? No wonder the villains (not smarter than everyone else, just less stupid) were able to kill so many of them. And speaking of those kills, the quips that cap them off would make FREDDY'S DEAD-era Freddy Krueger say, 'Dude, what the hell?'. Little more than a waste of a good cast and sporadically good effects.

It's been said that Mick Garris is one of the lesser talents that have made adaptations of King books. Having seen this and RIDING THE BULLET, I'm not sure I disagree.

 
 Posted:   Aug 30, 2014 - 6:11 PM   
 By:   mastadge   (Member)

Clearly it's 1408! Or Kingdom Hospital! Or Rose Red!

 
 Posted:   Aug 30, 2014 - 11:44 PM   
 By:   Francis   (Member)

Oops. I stand corrected on IN THE MOUTH OF MADNESS.

Watched SLEEPWALKERS (1992) on blu-ray tonight. I didn't know it was a riff on CAT PEOPLE with people morphing into cats and boys sleeping with their moms. I dislike cats. They make me break out in hives. Attractive cast. I could watch Madchin Amick all day. How did Alice Krige become typecast in weird roles? The morphing effect was smoothly done. But the film is overly contrived. It isn't good enough and it isn't scary even though it has surprises. I rate it average.


Much like the call from the governor coming too late.

If only I'd found this thread earlier, I could've warned you away from SLEEPWALKERS. I caught it on Chiller a while back. Okay, did King purposely make every character in the movie a freaking moron, or is it just me? No wonder the villains (not smarter than everyone else, just less stupid) were able to kill so many of them. And speaking of those kills, the quips that cap them off would make FREDDY'S DEAD-era Freddy Krueger say, 'Dude, what the hell?'. Little more than a waste of a good cast and sporadically good effects.

It's been said that Mick Garris is one of the lesser talents that have made adaptations of King books. Having seen this and RIDING THE BULLET, I'm not sure I disagree.


RIDING THE BULLET is definitely one of the more quirky King adaptations, I saw it with Garris present at the BIFFF festival and it has its moments. He had also brought a preview of "Desperation", showing the scene where Ron Perlman stops the couple on the highway and at the time that looked like it was going to be a stellar take on the book. Sadly, that scene and Ron Perlman was about the best thing about that tv adaptation, so I'd advise to stay away from it!

Mick Garris' highlights for me are definitely "The Stand", epic miniseries as well as him coming up with the Masters of Horror concept. Sleepwalkers was ok at the time, it flies by when you watch it and I really liked Mädchen Amick and Alice Krige in it as well as the Enya piece "Boadicea" they use.

I didn't know if you noticed this, but it also has a fun cameo segment:

 
 
 Posted:   Sep 1, 2014 - 3:36 AM   
 By:   Richard-W   (Member)

Stephen King does seem to rely on Mick Garris and Craig Baxley as directors. They are faithful to the letter, and handle blocking and composition well. King's writing doesn't require much more than that from a director. I might check out RIDING THE BULLET and PET CEMETERY if I can get them dirt cheap. SLEEPWALKERS goes into the trade-in pile for my next visit to Amoeba in Hollywood. I don't much like DESPERATION but I'm keeping it because I use to live where it was was filmed.

Next up are THE STAND, DREAMCATCHER and THE MIST -- the latter is being remade. King seems to do better with mini-series than with feature films.

 
 
 Posted:   Sep 1, 2014 - 3:40 AM   
 By:   Thor   (Member)

Without question -- THE SHINING (1980). It stands in a league of its own, and not only because of its scary tone, but because it's a mastery of filmmaking that none of the other King adaptations can match (even though there are a couple of other good films as well).

The most scary King SOUNDTRACK, however, is PET SEMATARY. Also in a class of its own. The film wasn't that scary, though.

 
 
 Posted:   Sep 1, 2014 - 4:53 AM   
 By:   Richard-W   (Member)

I agree. THE SHINING (1980) towers over most horror films and all King adaptations, including King's own adaptations. It's made by one of the great filmmakers and looks it. Whether you like the adaptation or not, no one can deny it's truly great cinema.

I find two soundtracks for PET CEMETERY, on Varese and on La-La Land. Which one do you recommend? Are samples posted online anywhere that I can listen to, do you know?

 
 
 Posted:   Sep 1, 2014 - 4:54 AM   
 By:   Richard-W   (Member)

-- stutter --

 
 
 Posted:   Sep 1, 2014 - 5:12 AM   
 By:   Thor   (Member)

If you ask me which album to recommend of the original 'arranged-for-listening' programming and the complete and chronological programming, I will almost always recommend the former. No matter what genre or score, but especially in this case, with horror music being so dependent on an extremely fluid presentation so as not to alienate the listener completely.

If you can find the Varese, go for it. If not, then it's the LLL.

It's not an album I play very often (if only because it freaks me out), but it's Goldenthal! Hard to go wrong, no matter what he does.

 
 Posted:   Sep 1, 2014 - 1:29 PM   
 By:   Francis   (Member)

Richard, do yourself a favor and do check out the movie Pet Semetary first before getting the album, I still need to upgrade to blu-ray myself. Personally I thought the Varese album covered the highlights of the score, the La-la offers more variation on the themes and a better sound.

 
 Posted:   Sep 2, 2014 - 2:41 PM   
 By:   David Kessler   (Member)

Scariest King movie top 5
5.Silver Bullet
4.Dead Zone
3.Cujo
2.The Shining (1980)
1.Pet sematary

Scariest King soundtrack top 3
3.Salem´s Lot
2.Silver Bullet
1.Pet Sematary

 
 
 Posted:   Sep 2, 2014 - 5:29 PM   
 By:   groovemeister   (Member)

Scariest i don't know, funniest : The Mist

 
 
 Posted:   Sep 2, 2014 - 5:44 PM   
 By:   Thor   (Member)

Scariest i don't know, funniest : The Mist

Funny? I find to be a very effective movie relying on mood. Not terribly scary, I agree, but the slowness of the monsters segueing by outside is brilliant and gloomy -- this concept was explored even further in Gareth Edwards' MONSTERS a few years later.

 
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