General assessment

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Neil W

Well-Known Member
May 27, 2008
1,203
2,591
Isle of Wight UK
Stephen King is probably my favourite author (in that I like both the general area he covers and also his style) and it is always interesting to see filmed adaptations of his work. Not always enjoyable, but always interesting. The problem is that it is easy to capture the physical events of his stories, but the best part of the writing is what goes on in the heads of the character. This adaptation of a short story tries to address this by various means, as a consequence of which you are never quite sure whether what you are seeing is real (whether now or flashback) or imagination, hallucination or the like.

Mick Garris, who seems to be King's cinematic collaborator of choice, does the same sort of job here which he has done on so much of King's material - he produces a competent but relatively thrill-less TV movie. The problem here is that this is a cinema release, and so it seems reasonable to expect the stakes to have been raised. Apart from some bad language and a couple of bare breasts, it hasn't, and this film is not the one to result in my reconsideration of Garris as a journeyman director. Other directors do King much better (also, to be fair, many are no better than Garris).

Incidentally, this isn't one of King's better stories: it recycles elements of Christine, The Talisman, and The Road Virus Heads North, to name but three.
 

guido tkp

Well-Known Member
Oct 1, 2009
2,632
478
outside the dome
...never made it through the whole ...ahem...coughcough...movie...

that i.....consciously remember...

but...if such things do appear...most likely (he says with a slightly more than sarcastic grin) either the...a...coughcough...screenwriter or the...ahem...coughcough...director would have tried anything they could to get an unsuspecting kingfan all foamin' at the mouth o'er their...ummmm.... monsterpiece....
 

Sunlight Gardener

Well-Known Member
Jul 22, 2013
373
1,261
I love David Arquette just because always makes me laugh, even when he's not supposed to. He's like your old drinking buddy that you always enjoy seeing when he turns up because he's the life of the party and you know by the end of the night he's going to to something ridiculous.

The movie would have been better if they wouldn't have gone for the predictable "cheap scares" and stuck to the story.
 

Maddie

Even a stopped clock is right twice a day.
Jul 10, 2006
4,945
9,340
that dollhouse at the end of the street
I was watching this again last night and am surprised that most , it seem, so far here, didn't like it. It is one of my favorites, second only to Rose Red. It was one of those where the movie was actually better than the story, to me. Even when it was flashbacking or you weren't certain what was real and what wasn't, it was still so atmospheric in horrifying nature and of its time period, not to mention the time traveling soundtrack. Even the cast were perfectly cast.

Riding the Bullet is just like really going for a ride with Stephen King, traveling fast, and that is what it was! My favorite part was the when the crow was hopping around eating the roadkill and said
what the fuk are you lookin at!
Well, I would recommend to Everyone who hasn't seen it. :lemo:
 

Ebdim9th

Dressing the Gothic interval in tritones
Jul 1, 2009
6,107
21,792
The way the film was shot, and edited, reminded me a lot of Dead Like Me. There was even an actor from that show in it, I forget his name, the curly-haired guy that wound up with the John Lennon and Plastic Ono Band concert tickets....
 

RichardX

Well-Known Member
Sep 26, 2006
1,713
4,301
This wasn't the worst King movie I've ever seen. I give that honor to "Cell." My expectations were low so the acting came off as fairly decent. Why does Hollywood portray everyone at a burial dressed in black? Does that still happen? I thought that mostly ended in the 1800s but every movie scene around a grave shows everyone dressed up in all black. They must have stock movie clothes for a "burial scene." As for the movie, it is watchable but conceptually confusing on so many levels as to be a mess. What exactly was it supposed to be about? The end of the 60s, how all things are temporary except apparently for a roller coaster. Nothing seemed particularly special about the Bullet. Just a weird movie. I will have to go back and read the story.
 

Constant Reader XIX

Active Member
Apr 13, 2017
34
129
I thought this movie was fairly decent, but, as previously stated here, it was mostly because I enjoy Arquette and had read the story before watching.

My favorite Garris flicks:
  1. Sleepwalkers
  2. The Stand
  3. Desperation

Sorry to leave out his version of The Shining, but the special effects in that one hurt my feelings really bad. (Especially Jack's eyes...)

Garris usually at least sticks to the story's theme, so I always give his movies a chance. I'm usually sufficiently entertained, and Riding the Bullet was no exception.

(As far as other director's who have done more than one King adaptation go, I always enjoy a Darabont adaptation.)
 

Zone D Dad

Well-Known Member
Apr 17, 2017
359
1,817
Chicago Suburbs
I can't say that I've enjoyed the Mick Garris adaptations that I've seen. It's too bad, because I really wanted to like them. They're just...bland. I'd love to see a network like AMC bring something to life. There's always a cinematic grandeur in the things they air and they're certainly not afraid to take risks in programming. I look at the TV version of The Stand it feels like I'm watching a video recording my inlaws made while traveling.

I still think Rob Reiner has made the best films (outside of Kubrick's The Shining, regardless of how the author feels about it). He manages tone so well in Stand by Me and Misery. Cronenberg's The Dead Zone is outstanding as well. I would've loved to see these guys do other adaptations. Drabont has been excellent as well, although The Mist is not one of my favorites (but is one of my favorite written works).
 
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