The Dark Tower (2017)

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In January 2014, Aaron Paul stated that he had a conversation with Howard and was possibly being considered to play Eddie Dean (earlier, in October 2012, Paul had tweeted that the role of Eddie Dean was a “huge dream” of his). Following that, a rumor appeared that Liam Neeson was interested in the part of Roland.

½ The Dark Tower movie, unlike the Mangnum Opus book series from writer Stephen King, suffers from the word ‘go’. An inspired performance from Idris Elba that makes me wish the rest of the film, from direction to production to the story, matched his commitment. Through development hell, numerous rewrites, director changes, and a minuscule 90-minute run time, The Dark Tower fails in nearly every aspect as a complete movie. First and foremost, this movie (*read entire franchise*) has been trapped behind closed doors for years. I remember when they first talked about adapting this into a few movies and a complimentary TV show with all these grand schemes to make it one of the largest and most complete packages Hollywood had seen. Instead, we got 90 minutes of a non-cohesive story with stilted and near-comical acting that felt like years of planning and writing crammed into a tight little window. The end result leads me to believe this was the first and last iteration we’ll see as fans. I’ll go on record and say the books are the best complete series I’ve ever read. I did my best to separate them from this movie. Matthew McConaughey mails in an over-acted performance as Walter and comes off as creepy in a pedophile way instead of sinister and cunning like the books. Tom Taylor won’t act his way into any future performances with his first on-screen performance in a major role. Nikolaj Arcel will remain just as unheard of after this release as a director as he was before it. But unfortunately, the biggest clue-in as to why this movie failed was Akiva Goldsman. The screenwriter/producer is one of the worst in the business. While movies his name is tagged on range from OK (I, Robot, Cinderella Man, Lone Survivor) to outright garbage (Transformers, Jonah Hex, Poseidon), I’ll never understand how he became so prominent in the business. The Dark Tower turns into a misguided attempt at starting a franchise by dropping you right into the thick of the story without any background or knowledge of what’s going on with only dialogue to spur movement forward. It should stop before continues any further.

The third arc in the Dark Tower comic series was released by Marvel Comics, and it is called The Dark Tower: Treachery. The first issue of the six issue arc was published on September 10, 2008. A hardcover volume containing all 6 issues was released on April 21, 2009.

First off, I created a profile on here just to write this review. I felt like I had to because of all the hate for this movie that was completely unwarranted. Sure this movie isn’t perfect but is it a fun sci-fi fantasy action movie that hints at a very dark expanded universe? Absolutely! Unfortunately we may never get that expanded universe on the big screen because of the negative reviews pouring out from people that just can’t enjoy a good movie and have to have it their way. The director did the best he could with the limited budget and source material he had. Do you really think he could create a movie that followed the books with that budget? There’s no way. The Dark Tower is a series that has so much to tell, so many stories and to be honest much of it can’t be told on the big screen. It’d be too hard to do so. What we are getting is an introduction to that Stephen King connected universe and while I would have loved more story told, I definitely appreciate the direction the director went with this in order to help people understand the concept of this series. I for one cannot wait for the TV series! Don’t let these critics and reviews dissuade you from seeing this movie. Enjoy it for what it is. This is my favorite movie this year and on the list of my all time favorites. Go see this movie!

The short answer is that it’s an epic story about Roland Deschain, who’s on a quest to find the Dark Tower, a building that’s said to link all the worlds in existence together. He’s the last living member of an order of knights known as Gunslingers, living in an alternate world (part of King’s larger multiverse) known as Mid-World.

December 7, 2009 saw the release of a spin-off online game titled Discordia, available to play free of charge on the official Stephen King website. The game is a continuation of the original Dark Tower story, following the war between the Tet Corporation and Sombra/NCP in New York, and it has been supervised by both Stephen King and Robin Furth. From the website: “Exploring the behind-the-scenes conflict between the two companies, Discordia introduces long-time Dark Tower fans to new characters and numerous mechanical/magical items developed by Mid-World’s Old Ones. Over the course of our adventure we will visit many locations, both those familiar to Dark Tower fans and others which we only glimpsed in the Dark Tower novels. While we may not see Roland and his ka-tet in this adventure, the development team has remembered the faces of its fathers. We have done our best to honor the original Dark Tower series while simultaneously mapping new and exciting Dark Tower territory.”

When a world is this huge and multi-dimensional, there’s no hope of cramming it into a 2-hour movie. But I fear the spirit of the books may be lost. One of my favorite parts of the series is when the ka-tet gets captured by Blaine the bonkers AI-gone-AWOL train, which then forces them into a riddle contest (shades of Gollum and Bilbo in the passageway under the mountain). Roland and Jake know plenty of good riddles, but it’s Eddie who defeats Blaine by letting his mind rest and sprawl and free-associate gnostically, linking different parts of his brain together—not looking straight at the problem, not focusing on the direct combat with the loco-motive, but rather going soft and thinking around corners to arrive upon the sorts of jokes that might perplex a computer.

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Title:The Dark Tower
Release:2017-08-03
Runtime:95 min.
Genre:Action, Western, Science Fiction, Fantasy, Horror
Stars:Idris Elba, Matthew McConaughey, Tom Taylor, Dennis Haysbert, Claudia Kim, Jackie Earle Haley
Overview:The last Gunslinger, Roland Deschain, has been locked in an eternal battle with Walter O’Dim, also known as the Man in Black, determined to prevent him from toppling the Dark Tower, which holds the universe together. With the fate of the worlds at stake, good and evil will collide in the ultimate battle as only Roland can defend the Tower from the Man in Black.

 

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