The 10 greatest Stephen King movie adaptations of all time


“We invent horrors to help us face the real ones.“- Stephen King

Stephen King’s works have reigned in the public imagination for years, earning him the well-deserved nickname “King of Horror”. While his novels have engaged both children and adults, they have also caught the interest of filmmakers who have rushed to make memorable film adaptations of his masterfully entertaining literary investigations.

Although King has denounced the multiple adaptations of his novels, they continue to be extremely popular with audiences who appreciate the cinematic translation of the genius of a true pioneer.

In recent years, King has continued this long tradition of film adaptations by letting new generations of artists shape his work into series intended for streaming platforms like Netflix.

For this edition of Far Out Fear Club, we’ve compiled a list of Stephen King’s 10 greatest adaptations, but have limited our entries to feature films only. The absence of Shawshank’s Redemption may be remarkable, but each of these 10 movies is worth watching a lot more.

Check out the full list of our top picks below.

Stephen King’s 10 Greatest Movie Adaptations:

ten. Mist (Frank Darabont, 2007)

From the director of Shawshank’s Redemption, Mist is a commendable sci-fi horror film that imagines a crazy storyline where a small town is suddenly attacked by predatory creatures. To make matters worse, the city is covered in a thick haze that makes it impossible to see what is there.

In a rare turn of events, Darabont actually suggested a change at the end of the novel and King liked it so much that he ended up admitting that the film’s conclusion was way darker than he had written. It ended up working perfectly as the audience claimed they never saw it coming.

9. The running man (Paul Michael Glaser, 1987)

An underrated gem involving Arnold Schwarzenegger, The running man is based on a dystopian version of America which features a popular show where convicted felons are engaged in a battle for survival against professional hired killers. Although this is a loose adaptation and heavily influenced by The price of danger, it is an interesting product of its time.

While The running man Could have been better handled by other directors, Glaser’s version is a fascinating extension of King’s imagination. Recently, it was announced that another adaptation of King’s eponymous novel is in the works and that it will be managed by none other than Edgar Wright.

8. Cujo (Lewis Teague, 1983)

An adaptation of Stephen King that received a mixed reception upon its release, Cujo is a strangely allegorical tale about a mother and son who are confined in their car as they hide from a vicious Saint Bernard. It is a metaphorical investigation into the binaries between domesticity and the wilderness.

In the following years, Cujo earned the label of a cult classic as many young viewers flocked to witness the horror of the film. Many high profile critics denounced it when it was first released, but King endorsed this version and named it as one of his favorites.

7. Misery (Rob Reiner, 1990)

A fantastic psychological thriller at the height of the best of its kind, Misery is a brilliant commentary on the nature of writing and authorship. It tells the bizarre story of a fan who is so obsessed with a particular writer that she paralyzes him and engages in discussions about his work.

This narrative generates additional layers of meaning when we consider the film to be an adaptation and almost all of us participate in such talk on some psychological level. King’s version impressed King so much that he also counted it among his top ten.

6. Christine (John Carpenter, 1983)

John Carpenter’s 1983 supernatural horror film builds on the classic horror trope that involves an inanimate object coming to life and terrorizing everyone. In this case, it’s a 1958 Plymouth Fury named Christine that gets inside the head of its teenage owner.

Christine is certainly counted among Carpenter’s most enigmatic works and has been revitalized by new generations of horror fans. A remake is being directed by Sony and Blumhouse with Bryan Fuller set to lead this exciting new project.

5. Support me (Rob Reiner, 1986)

A staple in the regular diet of coming-of-age movies in the United States, Support me is the touching story of a group of friends who embark on a journey that changes their lives forever. Along the way, they discover the meaning of friendship and learn to navigate the labyrinths of life by leaning on each other.

On several occasions, King has stated Support me be the best adaptation ever made from his own novels. According to Reiner, King told him after a screening, “This is the best movie ever made out of everything I’ve written, which doesn’t mean much. But you really captured my story. It’s autobiographical. “

4. The dead zone (David Cronenberg, 1983)

David Cronenberg’s 1983 science fiction project stars Christopher Walken as Johnny, a man who learns he has psychic abilities. When he realizes that he can see anyone’s future by making contact with them, Johnny dedicates his life to the murder of politician Greg Stillson (Martin Sheen) who will become a terrible fascist if he has one. ‘opportunity.

Cronenberg recalled: “The first adaptation I made was Stephen King’s book The dead zone and before that, all the scripts that I turned into movies were my own original scripts. I was reluctant at first because I thought if you want to be a real author you should be the author of your work, you should really write your own scripts.

Continuing, “[While] work on The dead zone, I realized that there is a kind of merging of your sensitivity with someone else’s when you make a film, it could be very productive and you would come up with a creation that was neither completely theirs, neither his, nor yours.

3. Horror show (George A. Romero, 1982)

The 1982 George A. Romero horror anthology film was the director’s way of trying to combine the visual aesthetic of 1950s EC horror comics with the literary sensibilities of Stephen King. Featuring all manner of evil – ranging from zombies to an army of cockroaches, Horror show is an entertaining endless mad race.

Romero explained, “Steve King and I, as long as we knew each other, would talk about movies and the old EC comics. Steve bought me some original panels and some books.

“I had some original paintings by Jack Davis so we were just sitting down and decided to do Horror show. Steve, basically, wanted to do a tribute to these EC books. He thought of an anthology [format] would be perfect for that. The script arrived in three weeks. And that was it.

2. Carrie (Brian De Palma, 1976)

A competent adaptation of one of King’s most famous novels, Carrie follows the tragic existence of a teenage girl who is relentlessly intimidated by the people around her until she discovers she possesses supernatural and badass powers. Carrie had a defining influence on fans as well as filmmakers, notably Quentin Tarantino and Ari Aster.

“I read the book. It was suggested to me by a writer friend. It was a writer friend, Stephen King, who wrote it,” recalls the filmmaker. two years [circa 1975]. I liked it very much and called my agent to find out who it belonged to. I found out that no one had bought it yet. Lots of studios were thinking about it, so I called some of the people I knew and told them it was a great book and I’m very interested in doing it.

1. The brilliant (Stanley Kubrick, 1980)

The most controversial entry on this list since Stanley Kubrick made the film his own, The brilliant is an immortal horror story about a man who goes mad on his own and decides to murder his wife and child. While King insisted that the evil was supernatural in nature, Kubrick argued that we cannot blame ourselves and that we are beyond redemption.

In an interview, King condemned the artistic decision, saying, “That’s what’s wrong with [Stanley Kubrick’s] The brilliant, basically… the film has no heart; there is no center on the image.

“I wrote the book like a tragedy, and if it was a tragedy, it’s because all the people loved each other. Here it seems that there is no tragedy because there is nothing to lose.


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