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Becky Ann Baker,
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The small town of Haven becomes a hot-bed of inventions all run by a strange green power device. The whole town is digging something up in the woods, and only an alcoholic poet can discover the secret of the Tommyknockers. Written by
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The novel Tommyknockers was one of Steve King's earlier attempts to do sci-Fi, and it was only moderately successful. King fused his usual horror plot structure formula to a basic alien possession plot and added his standard strong character development. The characters were, in this case, better than the plot deserved. John Power's three-hour TV adaptation leaves most of the story intact, but drops some of the crazier and more absurd elements of the original work. Even without reading the original, those familiar with King's work will notice the restrained manner in which the climax takes place.
In the woods behind Bobbie Anderson's (Marg Helgerson) house, something is buried. Some say it is an Indian curse, some say it's a holy place, but in general, the members of the little New England town of Derry don't go there. But one day, while her recovering alcoholic boyfriend Jim Gardner (Jimmy Smits) is out doing a poetry reading, Bobbie and her dog Pete start digging. Before long, Derry starts experiencing miracles, accompanied by green glowing lights.
The casting is superb, and with the exception of an overcooked performance by Traci Lords, the acting is fairly good. Smits and Helgerberger are very good. The characterizations in this three hour long film fairly represent the original work, but the script lacks some of the original's punch. The cinematography is solid for a TV movie and the special effects are good. Tommyknockers is well edited, competently directed and fairly entertaining, but, like the original novel, it is not one of King's better works.
Recommended for King fans. Weakly recommended for Sci-Fi fans.
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