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You could call “The Dark Tower” a swing and a miss. But, that would imply that this film was playing a fair game. This movie misses the point so bad that it could’ve saved face by becoming an original property. Even then, viewers would still watch the film and pick up on the whiff of desperation. Stephen King fans put up with decades of adaptations that cut material for time, for audience or just because it felt right. But, those adaptations still got the ‘feel’ of the source novels.

Early news on the movie wanted to blame aggressive fans for being against Idris Elba as the lead. They wanted to blame Matthew McConaughey for not committing to their idea of the Man in Black. Honestly, both actors weren’t that bad in their performances. It’s just that they were acting into nothing. Jackie Earle Haley, Dennis Haysbert and others show up in supporting roles trying to make sense of the rudderless direction. It doesn’t matter. This isn’t a film anymore. Hell, it stopped being a successful adaptation by the end of the first reel.

What we have here is SONY trying to homogenize their product. But, it’s not their product, it’s just their Film of a Stephen King property. Correct! That’s why it fails. Fans, attentive audience members and the spiritually inclined will always know that something is ‘off’ with this movie. They’ll hear others talk or maybe even pick up a book. All of that outside information will gel in their heads, as they watch this movie unfold onscreen.

Then, they’ll summon Yahweh to freeze that moment in time. From there, the enlightened viewer will state some facts. Not every adaptation is going to be absolute, but at least be good. While SONY didn’t make The Dark Tower, they made a film about supernatural figure using child love to destroy a monolithic tower. Little thought is given to backstory or mythology, as supernatural elements are shoved into real world segments. For a film that clocks in at 95 minutes, Tom Rothman is summoned from Hell to sprint alongside the movie to yell pop-up facts. Then, the film has the audacity to end on the promise of more to come.

Who wants more? It’s obvious that no one involved in this production wanted to make a Dark Tower movie. When a film goes this hard off the rails, it just doesn’t fall on studio interference. At this point, just go Ready Player One on the sequel and have all sorts of SONY characters appear for no reason. Lady Ghostbusters, the car from Christine and Tootsie can show up to teach Roland’s pet boy about being a Gunslinger.

This movie is the kinda Trojan Horse that every studio should fear. You ruined something good and everyone’s going to take note of its failure. The process of losing control this bad and making a film so far removed from what literally everything sold is astounding. If you have to pick one SONY atrocity this summer, go see “The Emoji Movie”. There’s nothing to expect there, other than voice actors cashing an easy check. “The Dark Tower” is an aggressive middle finger into the face of a dwindling summer movie crowd.


  • PG-13
  • 1 hr and 35 mins
  • SONY


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