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An eight episode adaptation of Stephen King's short stories, primarily from the Nightmares and Dreamscapes series. "Battleground" follows a quiet hitman becoming a target for violent revenge when he finds a mysterious package on his doorstep; A young woman and her attorney husband getting lost in a notoriously evil London neighborhood named "Crouch End"; "Umney's Last Case" is a 1930's era detective who realizes he's the main character in a novel, and he's being written out; A successful filmmaker films himself in "The End of the Whole Mess", recalling his genius brother's life and the scientific plan he applied to end world violence with unanticipated results; "The Road Virus Heads North" drives into gear as a celebrated writer realizes the demonic figure in the painting he's just acquired, is changing to show that it's onto the same stretch of road he's on; "The Fifth Quarter" has an ex-convict who goes to dastardly means to find treasure that puts his family's life at risk; "... Written by
Nightmares & Dreamscapes: From The Stories of Stephen King...
1.] "The End of the Whole Mess" - Very well done. Spot on adaptation of a neat little story. Livingston's performance is perfect - heartfelt and desperate. Henry Thomas was good too.
2.] "Battleground" - When I first read this story (about 15 years ago) I thought it would make a great TV movie - not a feature film - but at the time, I didn't think the SFX of the day could pull it off. This was a pretty good effort though, and I loved the lack of dialog. Hurt is not too bad either.
3.] "You Know They Got a Hell of a Band" - Not bad adaptation. This was a good short story, one I always try to read when I pick up Nightmares & Dreamscapes.
4.] "Umney's Last Case" - Not bad story, Macy's performance pulled it off. I always wondered why the chose to adapt this one though, especially over some of Kings other classics.
5.] "Autopsy Room Four" - Again, great story, but the adaptation leaves a lot to be desired, and only because of the hokey performances, especially from Richard Thomas and Greta Scacchi.
6.] "The Fifth Quarter" - Good performance from Sisto, but again, why do this story over something like "Grandma" or "The Jaunte".
7.] "The Road Virus Heads North" - The only thing they got right was the painting. Everything else, including Berringer's performance, was cheesy.
8.] "Crouch End" - This was a good story, but the adaptation did not capture the creepy feel King brought out in the narrative. The performances were OK, and it started off on the right foot, but things quickly went south after they started wandering around the empty streets. I think director Mark Haber, just couldn't put his finger on what the point of that story was.
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