The Screen Room
I watched a classic horror film last night that 1) I can’t believe I’ve never seen till now and 2) Somehow wasn’t on my “Films I should’ve seen by now but haven’t” list. 😳
(Or rather, John Carpenter’s Christine)
I actually received a message from a friend of mine last week suggesting I do a post on this movie. When I informed him that I’d never seen it, my reply was met with sarcasm flavoured scorn.
I figured I should probably watch it.
If you haven’t seen it, it’s directed by John Carpenter (Halloween), and mainly stars actors who were probably up and coming at the time but haven’t done much since, like Keith Gordon (Jaws 2), John Stockwell (Top Gun) and Alexandra Paul (Baywatch).
There are some recognisable faces in supporting roles though such as Harry Dean Stanton (Alien), Robert Prosky (Mrs. Doubtfire) and Roberts Blossom (old man Marley, the “South Bend Shovel Slayer” from Home Alone).
The movie is based on the 1983 Stephen King novel of the same name.
Here’s a short and sweet synopsis:
“An unpopular, nerdy boy buys a strange car with an evil mind of its own and his nature starts to change to reflect it.”
I enjoyed this film but I have to admit it wasn’t scary at any point.
I’m a big John Carpenter fan and his earlier films in particular were particularly creepy.
Halloween (1978), The Thing (1982) and The Fog (1980) are three of my favourite movies of all time and this film really has his signature stamp on it. Even down to the music which he composed himself it reminded me a lot of The Fog (just no where near as scary).
I found the fact that it felt very “John Carpenter” a bit weird. In the early days he wrote most of his own movies so you expected it, but with this one being a Stephen King adaptation it kind of felt less like a Stephen King film and more like a John Carpenter movie. I guess Stanley Kubrick did the same with The Shining though and I wouldn’t have that film any other way. 🙌
I recognised the main actor (Keith Gordon) straight away from Jaws 2. I love that film and have seen it a hundred times, but I think this is the only other thing I’ve seen him in.
I liked how his character changed throughout the movie, going from nerdy bully-target to cocky but slightly unhinged loner. You still feel for him even though he’s losing it, and to be honest I was routing for him when it came to him getting revenge on the bullies.
In the movie it’s never explained why the 1958 Plymouth Fury (Christine) is evil or how and why it got its supernatural powers. Apparently in the book it’s revealed that the car is possessed by its former owner, a violent man named Roland D. LeBay (oops, spoiler alert). 😳
I read that the film is “a shadow of the novel” which to be honest is mostly always the case. I haven’t read it personally so I can’t comment but if you have, let me know your thoughts.
All in all an enjoyable watch but my bajeezus are most definitely still fully intact. Maybe I’ve just been desensitised from watching too many horror movies. 🤷♂️
Seen it? Let me know below.👇