Wednesday, February 13, 2008

REVIEW: The Mist

The Shermanator finally found the woman of his dreams

The Mist (2007)

Directed and adapted by: Frank Darabont (Shawshank Redemption)

Story by: Stephen King

Starring: Thomas Jane, Marcia Gay Harden

What’s it about? According to IMDB.COM the mist tells the story of a freak storm which unleashes a species of blood-thirsty creatures on a small town, where a small band of citizens hole-up in a supermarket and fight for their lives.


As you probably know, a lot of Stephen King movies don't fare well on the big screen, especially the ones with supernatural content. Do you remember Dreamcatcher which starred a fiercely miscast Morgan Freeman? That movie was just awful but the source material deserved much more. This often happens to King's films. Movies such as The Shawshank Redemption or even The Green Mile make for much more (at least critically) successful versions.

In the case of Stephen King's latest adapted film, The Mist, the studio has enlisted the help of King-faithful director and screenwriter Frank Darabont, who also adapted Shawshank and Green Mile. Could he do what he did for those other less mystic films and make The Mist a big hit?

Taking on Darabont for The Mist proved to be a smart decision as he was able to focus more on the human response to the situation rather than the situation itself which is the essence of Stephen King's literary work.

What happens when you put a bunch of different people stuck together in a crisis situation where fear rules over sanity?

The Mist analyses this question and tries to determine who the real monsters are and which side of the glass they are on. Marcia Gay Harden does her best to prove it’s the people as religious-extremist “Mrs. Carmody”. If it were up to me, I’d rather be outside with the creepy crawlies and the death…she chilled me to my bones and was able to show, quite realistically, that religious extremists of any background can become a terrorist.

I really enjoyed The Mist. Darabont chose to focus on the core of the material rather than create a money-making schlock-fest which takes advantage of king's many, many fans. He respected the audience and has created a frightening journey into madness.

While not a masterpiece, The Mist was original, made good use of computer aided graphics and took the mature road. I think horror fans will enjoy it but if you aren't familiar with Stephen King's work, or you don't like this type of movie, while it might surprise you (especially the acting from Thomas Jane) it won't knock your socks off.

The Mist gets 3 ½ blood soaked tentacles from me!

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