Stephen King in the cinema: the five best adaptations

next september 21 Stephen King turns 75 years old. The American writer is a true idol of the horror genre and has captivated millions of readers around the world with his stories and novels. And also to the viewers because more than fifty of his works have been adapted for film and television.

On the occasion of Stephen King’s 75th birthday, Every Wednesday in September, at 10 p.m., TCM viewers will be able to enjoy some of the best film versions of his novels and stories. titles like The Shining, The Shawshank Redemption, The Mist, Total Eclipse either Christine. Also, Paco Square Y Maria Gomez will analyze the literary career and personality of this famous writer in an entertaining and educational Face to face which will be broadcast on September 14 at 10 p.m. We are going to review five of them that, for various reasons, are unforgettable:

1976. ‘Carrie’, by Brian DePalma

With sissy spacek Y Piper Laurie. carrie It was the first novel Stephen King published. “Legend has it that when he wrote it, he threw it in the trash because he didn’t like it at all,” explains the journalist. Maria Gomez, big fan of Stephen King and horror literature and movies, author of the novel Hatred in the hands.

“It was his wife who rescued her and encouraged the writer to finish it,” he explains. “It was adapted by Brian De Palma at the height of his career,” the director points out for him. Pac Plaza.

“The image of Sissy Spacek bathed in pig’s blood became a new icon of horror cinema. It is one of the films that has best stood the test of time, both from Brian De Palma’s cinema and from the film adaptations that have been made of Stephen King’s novels,” says the director of The grandmother.

carrie It is also Stephen King’s own favorite adaptation. “Brian De Palma’s genius was getting us to take off our armor before the end. He left us completely vulnerable to what was going to happen. He created a heart-stopping ending that scares people, ”explains the writer in the documentary. The horrors of Stephen King. carrie She had two Oscar nominations at the 1977 ceremony: Sissy Spacek for Lead Actress and Piper Laurie for Supporting Actress.

1980. ‘The Shining’, by Stanley Kubrick

With Jack Nicholson, Shelley Duvall Y Danny Lloyd. The most controversial adaptation of a Stephen King novel. It was published in 1977. The writer hates Kubrick’s adaptation. “I had a conversation with him before starting”, explains the author in the documentary The horrors of Stephen King.

“He said to me: Don’t you think all spirit stories are optimistic? If there are spirits that means we survive death and that is an optimistic perspective. And I replied: Mr. Kubrick, what about hell? I don’t believe in hell, he answered her. But some of us do believe and those spirits are the ones in hell,” says King.

For the novelist the film is cold. “In my novel the hotel burns and in the film it freezes. The images are powerful, there is no doubt about that, but for me that is superficial, not substantial. I often describe that movie as a beautiful car that doesn’t have an engine.” Stephen King, on the other hand, blessed with congratulations the version that was made in 2019 of doctor sleep, the continuation of The glow who directed mike flanagan and who starred Ewan McGregor Y Rebecca Ferguson.

1986. ‘Count on me’, by Rob Reiner

With River Phoenix, Wil Wheaton, Corey Feldman, Jerry O’Connell Y Kiefer Sutherland. The film is based on the story The body, published in 1982 inside the book The four Seasons. Count on me, like many other Stephen King stories, it includes part of his own biography. “His father abandoned him when he was little and his mother had to take care of the family,” says María Gómez.

“He grew up traveling from one city to another, without roots, and had a pretty tough childhood and adolescence. For example, he saw one of his friends run over by a train, ”explains the journalist. “In many of Stephen King’s novels, the loneliness of childhood is reflected, something that is universal because we have all felt alone and misunderstood at some point.

Themes such as bullying, problematic adolescence, unstructured families are repeated a lot in his works”, explains Paco Plaza. “Stephen King has spoken of sexist violence, child abuse, racism… It is a type of fiction that leads you to reflection, that allows you to open debates,” says María Gómez. Count on me It was nominated for an Oscar for Best Adapted Screenplay at the 1987 ceremony.

1990. ‘Misery’, by Rob Reiner

With james caan Y Katy Bates. Another of the novels where many autobiographical features of the writer can be culled. It was published in 1987. “He had become a star writer and was harassed and persecuted by his fans,” recalls María Gómez.

“That’s when you write Misery and there he reflects his fears as an author, as a creator. There we also find the fear of plagiarism and the blank page. In addition, Stephen King had serious addiction problems, which he managed to get out of and which have also been shown in his stories.

Kathy Bates won the Oscar for best actress in 1991 for playing Annie Wilkies, the psychopathic nurse who first takes care of and then kidnaps writer Paul Sheldon, played by James Caan. Curiously, Stephen King suffered in 1999 an accident similar to the one Paul Sheldon’s character has in that novel. He was hit by a van when he was walking near his house and was badly injured. His recovery was slow, complicated and very painful.

1994. ‘Life imprisonment’, by Frank Darabont

With Tim Robbins Y Morgan Freeman. The film is based on a short story, Rita Hayworth and the Shawshank Redemption also published in 1982 in the book The four Seasons. “Adaptations of misery, life imprisonment and after Lto green mile they gave Stephen King a seal of quality. They are raw, but everyday stories”, says Paco Plaza.

Years later, in 2007, Frank Darabont directed the adaptation of The fog and became one of the filmmakers who has best understood the sensory and metaphorical universe of Stephen King. Life imprisonment It had seven Oscar nominations in 1995 and, today, it is still a film highly appreciated by viewers, although many are still surprised that it comes from a story written by Stephen King.

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