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The Dead Zone (1983)

7.3
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Ratings: 7.3/10 from 35,445 users   Metascore: 69/100
Reviews: 168 user | 96 critic | 8 from Metacritic.com

A man awakens from a coma to discover he has a psychic detective ability.

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(screenplay), (novel)
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Title: The Dead Zone (1983)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Sheriff Bannerman
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Sean Sullivan ...
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Géza Kovács ...
Sonny Elliman (as Geza Kovacs)
Roberta Weiss ...
Simon Craig ...
Peter Dvorsky ...
Julie-Ann Heathwood ...
Amy
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Storyline

Christopher Walken wakes from a coma due to a car accident, only to find he has lost five years of his life, and yet gained psychic powers. Foreseeing the future appears to be a 'gift' at first, but ends up causing problems... Written by Paul Reynolds <pauljr@innotts.co.uk>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

In his mind, he has the power to see the future. In his hands, he has the power to change it.


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

21 October 1983 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Dead Zone  »

Box Office

Budget:

$10,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

SEK 6,933,078 (Sweden)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Dolby Stereo)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Martin Sheen's character says he has had a vision that he will be the President of the United States. Sheen went on to play the President of the United States in the mini series Kennedy (1983) and in The West Wing (1999). See more »

Goofs

The story seems to take place in its production time, the early 1980s. The doctor, played by Herbert Lom, seems much too old to have been a child during WW2. In fact Lom was 22 when the war started. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Johnny Smith: [Johnny is reading "The Raven" to his class] And the Raven, never flitting, still is sitting, still is sitting, on the pallid bust of Pallas just above my chamber door, and his eyes have all the seeming of a demon's that is dreaming, and the lamp light o'er him streaming throws his shadow on the floor, and my soul from out that shadow that lies floating on the floor, shall be lifted... nevermore.
See more »

Crazy Credits

As the opening titles roll, certain parts (or "dead zones") of the screen become blocked out, until the part of the screen you can see spell out the title "The Dead Zone." See more »

Connections

Referenced in Never Sleep Again: The Elm Street Legacy (2010) See more »

Soundtracks

Camptown Races
(uncredited)
Written by Stephen Foster
Performed by Traditional
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Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Dead Zone is Perfection.
11 October 2009 | by (Indianapolis, IN) – See all my reviews

At this point in his career, Stephen King had the miraculous, almost Hitchcockian ability to allow a story to proceed from the most believable of circumstances, trickle like water delicately over tiny steps which, taken alone, did not seem too out of the ordinary, and then coalesce magnificently into masterpieces that defy categorization – not horror, not science fiction, but truly something magical, if unnameable. Dead Zone is such a masterpiece.

Owing in no small part to the subtle yet compelling performance of Christopher Walken, who in the same year would star in one of my most beloved films of the genre, Brainstorm, Dead Zone may well be one of King's best. Almost certainly based to some extent on real-life psychic Peter Hurkos, Dead Zone shows the master, King, taking an already well known premise to a new and thrilling conclusion.

The theme developed here is a common one for King. An innocent victim, through no fault of his own, is thrown into a paranormal world that will lead to an ultimate test. The idea is classic literary tragedy at its best, and is represented with equal aplomb in King's contemporaneous work such as Firestarter and Christine.

Director David Cronenberg, smoking hot at the time with masterpieces of his own – Scanners and Videodrome, delivers a film that resonates perfectly with King's book, with pacing and tone that capture what was best about King in this period. King himself was experiencing his golden age, with Cujo, Firestarter, Carrie and The Shining rounding out his catalog within a few years. In other words, this is the best of the best for some people who gave us some pretty good stuff.

The supporting cast is brilliant. Martin Sheen, Tom Skerritt, Anthony Zerbe, and the lovely Brooke Adams are all exceptional. Screenwriter Jeffrey Boam, who also penned such classics as Lost Boys, Lethal Weapon 2 and 3, and the Witches of Eastwick, crafted a brilliant treatment that works absolutely perfectly from start to finish. Michael Kamen's brilliant score is but one jewel in the crown of his many achievements, and was said to be so disturbing that overhearing him practicing it gave his neighbors nightmares.

I suppose I could try to think of more ways to say it, but there is no need. It can be summed up once and for all in a single sentence. Dead Zone is perfection.


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