Friday, October 12, 2007

The Dead Zone (1983)

Today, Anthony Michael Hall plays in the hit TV series based on this 1983 psychological thriller starring the great Christopher Walken (Wedding Crashers). THE DEAD ZONE opens with schoolteacher Johnny Smith (Walken) driving home at night in the rain and fog and crashing into a tractor-trailer carrying milk.
In a coma for 5 years, Johnny awakens with the “power of second sight”. Whenever he touches people’s hands, he is able to see into their future. If he touches the hand of the deceased, he can see what happened to them. There are some really freaky scenes where he actually becomes a part of those visions—he is present while someone is murdered and sees the murderer’s face. People are afraid of him, and they think he is crazy. Johnny feels that his power is a curse, until he realizes how it can be a blessing in changing the results of the future. There are some visions that he sees but can feel something missing—that’s the dead zone. As his Doctor, Sam, explains it to him, “Not only can you see the future but you can change it.” That’s where Martin Sheen appears as a sleazy, dirty politician, Greg Stillson. (A total contrast to the moralistic Carl Fox of Wallstreet.) As Stillson shakes Johnny’s hand, his true political platform comes to light: Stillson is the next Hitler. Johnny decides that his power is a blessing after all, and sets out to change the future. At the heart of the story is the romance between Johnny and his ex-fiancĂ©e, who marries while he is in the coma. Both of them are still in love with each other, but unlike his ability to alter the future, he is powerless to change the past. Based on a Stephen King novel, The Dead Zone was directed by David Cronenberg (The Fly). Check out the trailer:

1 comment:

Vladigogo said...

The 80s were big for Stephen King in terms of adaptations of his films, although most of the adaptations were pretty awful.