by: Steve / @misterjackal
It’s been some time since I’ve written something, and what better moment than after watching the sequel to one of my favorite movies of all time! For those that don’t know, Doctor Sleep is a direct sequel to The Shining! Both of which were originally books by horror writer, Stephen King.
The Shining followed Jack Torrance and his family as he becomes the winter caretaker of haunted The Overlook Hotel in the mountains of Colorado. They settle in the hotel and we start to see his son, Danny, having the Shine that allows him to communicate with other people and see things on occasions. Stuff happens… Elevator blood river… Creepy twins… Old lady boobs in room 237… “All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy”… Jack tries to kill them… Some of the things that still work from it’s 1980 theatrical release. If you haven’t seen it, WHAT IS YOUR PROBLEM?! WATCH IT!
Now, with all that said, leads us to Doctor Sleep. This flick follows Danny Torrance (Ewan McGregor) almost 30 years after the events from The Overlook. Since then he’s become an alcoholic and learned to shut out the Shine until he finds Abra (Kyliegh Curran) that also has the Shine and need his help to get away from these Shine eaters called True Knot. The group is led by Rose The Hat (Rebecca Ferguson) and these people are like succubi and suck the Shine from individuals. LET THE FUN BEGIN!!!
This movie, much like its predecessor has a slow build but once it picks up it takes you places that you are looking forward to. There are moments in this that are super intense. Not really your typical horror nowadays that’s full of jump scares, this did a great job at building the tension and suspense from beginning to end.
This movie is very character driven. So, if you go in expecting scares, blood, and guts, you are going to hate this. There’s a lot of character building that gets you interested in all the characters, good or bad. Mike Flannagan (writer, director and editor) did a great job building everyone and showing you their intentions throughout and explaining why things are the way they are.
The acting is great! Ewan McGregor does a really good job at being a broken character that has had a really tough life but is still trying to help out as best he can. Rebecca Ferguson was great as the bad guy. She showed her intentions from the get and did a fantastic job at building the villains to the point that you understand why the way they are and makes complete sense. The one actor that I tip my hat off too is the young Kyliegh Curran! She is so good! Having her character upfront and being super confident in her powers and knowing the implications of everything that could happen. I am really excited to see where her career goes.
There is some fan service in this throughout but don’t expect it all the way through until the third act. That’s the only close to a spoiler that really isn’t really a spoiler because you do see it in the trailers. Even though it was directed by Kubrick (obviously) but feels a lot like one. The long drawn out shots, wide angles, and suspenseful music add to everything that made me love this movie.
I was super excited for this to come out and couldn’t wait to see it. I loved everything about this other than the 2 1/2 hour run time. Could it have been shorter? Not really. Everything fits, makes sense, and could take away from somethings that you may need to know later on.
Overall, Doctor Sleep is really good and you should definitely check it out! It’s a great suspenseful movie that is filled with tension and great acting. Is it better than The Shining? No. Is it a good sequel that holds it own next to the original? Absolutely. Everything works and it’s the type of horror that I truly enjoy! GO SEE IT!!!