Needful Things (1993) Poster


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  • When newcomer Leland Gaunt (Max von Sydow) opens an antique shop in Castle Rock, Maine, curious residents are eager to patronize him because he features unusual items that they've always wanted, such as a 1956 Mickey Mantle baseball card for 11-year-old Brian Rusk (Shane Meier), a Hummel figurine for widow Nettie Cobb (Amanda Plummer), and an ancient Azca necklace that cures the arthritic pain of cafe owner Polly Chambers (Bonnie Bedelia). Can't afford it? That's no problem because Gaunt is always willing to reduce the price in return for a few harmless pranks. Soon, the town is overflowing with jealousy, spite, and murder, and only Sheriff Alan Pangborn (Ed Harris) seems to be aware of what's actually going on. Edit (Coming Soon)

  • Yes. Needful Things is also a 1991 novel by American horror writer Stephen King. The novel was adapted for the movie by American screenwriter W.D. Richter. Edit (Coming Soon)

  • It's a 1958 Mercedes-Benz 300d W189 automatic "Adenauer". Photos can be seen here and here. Edit (Coming Soon)

  • The film goes into very little detail about Gaunt's origins. While viewers are aware that there is something supernatural about Gaunt and the items in his store, it isn't until Brian Rusk attempts suicide that he voices to Sheriff Pangborn his feeling that Gaunt is "a monster...not a man." Pangborn then tries to warn Polly that Gaunt is "evil...not a human being" and to convince Fr Meehan (William Morgan Sheppard) that Gaunt is "the devil." By Gaunt's own admissions and the newspapers that Pangborn finds, it's also apparent that Gaunt is immortal. So the best that can be concluded about Gaunt is that he is an evil, immortal, nonhuman being whose work is to manipulate humans into destroying themselves. Some Stephen King fans have likened Gaunt to other "evil, supernatural beings" in King's various works, such as Randall Flagg in The Stand (1978), Pennywise in It (1986), Tak in Desperation (1996), and Andre Linoge in the TV miniseries Storm of the Century (1999) (1999). Others have likened Gaunt to the outer gods in H.P. Lovecraft's Cthulhu mythos. None of these have been confirmed by King himself. Edit (Coming Soon)

  • The blowing up of Fr Meehan's church sends most of Castle Rock's residents into the streets, some to help but most to continue the mayhem. As sirens wail, fires break out, and Pangborn tries to break up fights and prevent looting, Gaunt sits calmly on his front porch, watching the town destroying itself. After Pangborn stops Meehan from killing Reverend Rose (Don S. Davis), he screams, "No!", and fires several shots in the air, catching the attention of the crowd. He pleads with them to stop the killing and explains that this is all because of Gaunt, who thrives on hate. The people begin to cool down and start making note of the "pranks" that Gaunt asked them to do in return for their "needful thing." Suddenly, a gunshot rings out, the bullet striking Pangborn in the left shoulder. Danforth "Buster" Keeton (J.T. Walsh) steps forward and reveals that his chest is wired with explosives. At first, Danforth says that it is Pangborn who is to blame but later changes his mind when he realizes that it was Gaunt who made him kill his wife Myrtle (Gillian Barber). When Gaunt tries to egg him on by saying, "Do it, Buster," he replies, "Don't call me Buster." Keeton charges at Gaunt and they both fall through a window into Gaunt's shop, followed by an explosion that destroys the entire building. As the dust clears and Pangborn approaches the rubble, he is surprised to see Gaunt come walking out of it, unharmed. Gaunt apologizes for this not being one of his better works but asks Pangborn to give his regards to his grandson Bob with whom he will "make headlines" in 2053. In the final scene, Gaunt gets into his car and drives out of Castle Rock. Edit (Coming Soon)

  • Director Fraser C. Harris produced a three-hour long version for American TV, which was aired or airs on Turner Broadcasting System's channels. Scenes of violence were mitigated, however. On the other hand, one can find dozens of extended plot sequence. Unfortunately, this extended version has not been released on any home cinema format as of today. Edit (Coming Soon)


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