Possibly the worst film I’ve ever seen in my life, Dreamcatcher is a reminder to me of why Stephen King is better read and not viewed.
Let me begin by saying that Stephen King is my favorite author. I own all of his books and have read many of them more than once.
Going against my basic rule for movies based on books (always read the book first), I got too busy over the last two weeks to read Dreamcatcher and decided to go see the movie anyway. It’s a Stephen King adaptation, so I would have seen it at some point in time (it’s obligatory for me, even when I know the film will be bad).
I have enjoyed many King-based films, such as Stand by Me, The Green Mile, Christine, Storm of the Century, and Carrie — to name a few. Many of his works which are translated to film, however, get mangled in the process and come out on the big screen looking like some art experiment gone terribly wrong. Dreamcatcher falls into the latter category.
There are so many things wrong with this movie that it’s difficult to find someplace to start, but I’ll try.
The special effects are awful. It’s as though a child’s finger paintings were used to fill in where digital animation was supposed to be. Who’s responsible for this mess?
The story is choppy and, as in most King book-to-film transitions, poorly written. Stephen King’s books always take you away to a different place while you get caught up in the imagination of a genius. I’ve never been disappointed with a King novel or story, so it’s hard for me to see where this movie was anything more than loosely based on his novel. Perhaps people should read the book before making a movie by the same name.
The acting is atrocious. It’s silly and wooden and predictable as some very good actors tackle some very bad parts. Morgan Freeman, who is a personal favorite of mine, has the most underdeveloped part and comes across as a stranger in the movie — that is, a stranger to the movie, as he never seems to fit into the story. The rest, suffice it to say, do not fall far behind him.
Overall, the movie is an appalling attempt to transition what is undoubtedly a fantastic piece of work by King to the big screen. I have learned over the years that many King-adapted films will be worse than deplorable — they’ll force you into the bathroom to lose your popcorn and candy. This movie is more than poorly conceived and completely unrealized, it’s an example of the kind of movie that should never be made.
I’m already forcing myself to forget it was ever made and that I ever saw it.
The movie is distant from the content, there’s no emotional connection to the audience since you never find any of the characters worth caring for, and it will leave many with a bad taste in their mouths when it comes to Stephen King works, and that’s the worst part since his writing is beyond reproach and compare.
I nearly got up and left the theater only 30 minutes into it, then regretted not having done so for the remainder of the film.
Don’t waste your money or time on this movie. It’s nothing more than trash with Stephen King’s name put on it in the hopes of drawing a crowd. Sadly, this movie is likely to draw nothing except flies.
Get the book and read it instead. This is a case where I have lost more than two hours of my life in the most horrific and painful way.