Five Stephen King film adaptations you need to see
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Stephen King has become one of the great authors of modern time and film studios have tried to capitalise on that success by adapting his best-selling books into feature films. Not all attempts at this have been successful with 1992’s atrocious Sleepwalkers being a prime example and The Shining, whilst being a great movie in its own right, failing to keep to its source material, even according to King himself. Luckily there are a bunch of great Stephen King adaptations out there, and with The Dark Tower and IT quickly approaching, now is a great time to look back at some of them. Here, then, are five of the best Stephen King adaptations. 1) Stand By Me (1986) Based on King’s novel The Body which released in 1986, Stand By Me remains one of the best Stephen King Movies out there. A heartfelt story that mainly follows four boys on a journey to recover the body of a dead peer, the film successfully tells a much deeper story of friendship and growth. The film is so relatable in how it presents its characters; four young people who are all crossing into adolescence and come from different, troubled backgrounds. The way the movie depicts each of the leads and follows them through an important point in their lives, can be quite emotional at times. The theme present throughout is the value of friendship and the young actors, Will Wheaton as Gordie, River Phoenix as Chris, Corey Feldman as Teddy and Jerry O’Connell as Vern, all do a fantastic job of making their camaraderie believable and meaningful. Whilst this is probably one of the most grounded Stephen King adaptations, it is undoubtedly one of the best. 2) Misery (1990) 1990’s Misery is arguably one of the scariest Stephen King films. Telling the intense story of author Paul Sheldon (James Caan) who, after a car crash in the mountains, is rescued then held hostage by the dangerously obsessed Annie Wilkes (Kathy Bates). Kathy Bates put in a chilling performance, deservedly winning an Oscar for her efforts. Every time she is on screen she brings a sense of dread that makes the audience uneasy as to what her character will do next. She rightfully steals the show despite Caan also being excellent as the helpless Sheldon. The film masterfully builds tension by having Sheldon fight small battles with Annie throughout. This makes it all the more satisfying when everything occasionally boils over and Annie descends further into madness in a couple of explosive scenes that have since become iconic. Misery, surprisingly, remains the only Stephen King adaptation to win an academy award.
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