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OBS BOOK VS. MOVIE: DREAMCATCHER

by Dawn, October 24, 2009

Stephen King’s Dreamcatcher takes place in the fictional town of Derry, Maine where four childhood friends go on a hunting trip only to be overcome by something unexpected.

As children the four boys save and befriending Douglas “Duddits” Cavell, a child with Down syndrome. Duddits gift in return, the power of telepathy that links the four together forever. Many years later, the friends have grown up and live separate, but equally problematic ones. Now the friends have to band together against an alien invasion and a near psychotic army Colonel, Abraham Kurtz.

This Stephen King novel, written in 2001, was a recuperation tool from King’s 1999 car accident. In fact the character, Jonesy, was in an automobile accident similar to King’s own. While written extremely fast, the book is over 800 pages. This didn’t stop writer’s Lawrence Kasdan and William Goldman from adapting it into a feature film released two years later in 2003. The film adaptation did a good job of encompassing the books story and feeling. This is possibly due to the slow pace of the book, allowing for the cutting out of unnecessary material. The film, lengthy at 135 minutes, makes very few changes from its source, but still lacks the necessary time to delve deep hearts and stories of each character.

If you know anything about movie making, you know the first thing to get scrapped is unnecessary details of the past. This movie is no different. While the story does tell of the boys meetings with Duddits, their whole life from then until now is scrapped to make room for heavier action. Another major change to the film was Duddits involvement at the ending with his conquering of Mr. Gray, rather than Jonesy.

All this being said, either on their own is an interesting and suspenseful tale that is worth the time to watch or read.

Pros
– The films CGI and sets are a perfect fit to the books incredible tale
– Keeps to the book much more than other adaptations out there
– The acting caliber in the film is respectful to the book
– Dark tone was kept in tact

Cons
– Major character development cut
– Major ending change
– Long (both book and film)

Overall Accuracy: 4.5 out of 5

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