Pop Culture Princess

Pop Culture Princess
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Monday, April 08, 2013

Are we in the midst of a Stephen King Renaissance?

Stephen King's media presence has been pretty steady over the past couple of decades and rightfully so,but it has gone through a number of ups and downs as time moves on. This year,however, a strong revival of interest in both his past and present work seems to be growing.

 One of the key elements for this recent revival is the film remake of his first hit horror novel,Carrie,which was meant to be released last month yet now has a fall date scheduled.

 You could say that the studio thought it play better during the Halloween season but something tells me that due to it's pivotal prom scene,someone might have had second thoughts about putting this out during the spring(I could be wrong there). Of course,the real qualm that folks would have with this reboot is to wonder if it was even necessary for reasons other than money.

In my opinion,the original movie still resonates with audiences and even with such good casting as Chloe Grace Moretz in the title role(plus,Julianne Moore as her demented mom) and a screenplay that promises to be more faithful to the source material(which I doubt,since this version is set in present time),fans might best served by renting the 70's Carrie instead:

 What is in theaters right now is the documentary Room 237,that has a number of obsessed fans sharing their theories about the hidden messages within Stanley Kubrick's cinematic interpretation of Stephen King's The Shining.

 Granted, it can be said that this film is more about Kubrick than King(which is one of the reasons that some fans have trouble with this movie in the first place) but it does invoke King's story telling power nonetheless. Despite the creative quirks and liberties taken with the original novel,the true terror of The Shining must be credited to King and like it or not,the Kubrick version does have it's fair share of chills and thrills.

This new sparkle upon the legacy of The Shining should be most helpful when the long awaited follow-up to that book comes out this September. Doctor Sleep  shows us an adult version of the troubled psychic son from the original,Danny Torrance who has become a caretaker to the ailing elderly.

 His unique powers of perception are still intact and must be brought to the fore front in order to protect a young girl with similar abilities from being  fed upon by immortal creatures known as the True Knot. How solid this story is will be determined soon enough but for now,it's good to see King take the reins in regards to bringing his former characters back to life:

We won't have to wait for autumn,however,for more Stephen King goodness as starting this June,CBS will be airing an adaptation of Under The Dome,one of his more recent sci-fi outings. The main premise of the plot is that a small town is mysteriously cut off from the outside world via a rounded off force field,causing more than one kind of chaos for the people trapped beneath it's boundaries.

 A few naysayers have insisted that "the Simpsons did it first!" but the concept for this book came from a draft of an unfinished King piece from 1982 entitled The Cannibals(which had several pages posted at the official Stephen King website). This could be an interesting drama to watch unfold,especially during those long days of summer time viewing and I for one intend to check it out:

 As a King fan myself, I will be first to admit that not everything he's put out is top notch but like the little girl with the curl on her forehead,when he's good,he's very,very good indeed. Looking back at his past body of work as well as anticipating more to come is a great blessing for any fan to have for their favorite pop culture contributor and important for those new to his sinister section of fiction to better understand the really rare nature of his success:

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