This screenplay is the perfect reduction of the essence of the novel by King. Beautiful music underpinning scenes of hectic tension. Great interpretation of the characters by the cast of actors. This doesn’t have the slow boil the book seems to have, yet the events only cover a single week there. Insidious 9/10.
I love this movie, but I can’t explain why. Excellent acting from Max von Sydow and Ed Harris, probably. The rest of the cast was brilliant as well. Even though I love it, and it does a great job of reducing the book to the essential elements, there are a few things that bother me. I feel like the tensions in the town were already too high before Gaunt’s arrival, and the characterisations of Nettie and Wilma were too broad for my liking. The sexualisation of Gaunt’s interest in Polly also struck a wrong note for me. The reviews of this film, when it came out, criticised how unpleasant everyone was … but that was the point. It might have helped to show the town being ‘pleasant’, but with underlying tensions, before the shop opened – it might have made the point better. I’d be interested in how someone like Jordan Peele would remake this story. 9/10.