The Dark Tower (2017)
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Critic Reviews for The Dark Tower
Elba's sublime professionalism in treating the part as worthy of him, and the dialogue as if it deserves to be spoken out loud, saves the movie from total annihilation, just as The Gunslinger saves this world.
Eight volumes, more than 4,000 pages, and a multitude of exotic settings and alternative realities entered by two near-mythic antagonists, are here transformed into turgid cinematic slop.
It comes across as a cash-in that someone scribbled on the back of an envelope after seeing Return of the Jedi.
Audience Reviews for The Dark Tower
In an apocalyptic reality, a sorcerer desires to destroy the world so that he can take over everything, yada, yada, yada. The actors do their job in this that feels like a retread, but perhaps the world building involved is too big of a job for one movie, I thought, and better suited to a television series. As it is the work feels rushed and incomplete, however well done.
An appealing attempt at a movie. nothing works. it feels stilted and just super unbelievable characters!
I have never read any of Stephen King's popular fantasy series, The Dark Tower, so I walked into the long-awaited film adaptation with no investment. I walked out with very little investment. The film peaked at its casting, with Idris Elba as the mythic Gunslinger hunting down a notorious evil sorcerer, The Man in Black (Matthew McConaughey), a.k.a. Randall Flagg. For the first fifteen minutes or so, the world building is pretty straightforward and accessible. The Man in Black is looking across universes for special psychic children whose abilities he can focus to destroy the titular Dark Tower, a monument protecting the stability of all universes. A young kid is having prophetic dreams but appears emotionally disturbed to his family. Before a group of rat people hiding behind human masks can kidnap him, he runs away, finding a portal to Midworld, and into the path of the Gunslinger, who seeks personal vengeance against the Man in Black. From there the movie gets pretty hazy with its rules and lore. The production design of this alien world is a bit bare. The characters stay in an archetypical range and don't give you much reason to care. The action is serviceable but unmemorable, the Gunslinger credo is rather cheesy especially when repeated with such self-seriousness, and sometimes it feels like McConaughey is in a different movie altogether. If you're a fan of the series, I have to imagine you'll be processing some level of disappointment by the end of the film. If you're a franchise novice, like me, you may find some stray things to enjoy in the moment, but the film evaporates from your mind immediately after leaving the theater, banished to the dustbin of bland sci-fi action. Nate's Grade: C
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