Thursday, November 9, 2017

[Review] The Dark Tower

The Dark Tower is one of many Stephen King properties to hit movie and TV screens this year. And well, it's the unfortunate rubble of the bunch. For the record, I'm not familiar with the source material, but the film itself plays out like a slice of bad YA fiction.

In another realm exists The Dark Tower, a forceful structure that holds the universe together. There, the last Gunslinger (Idris Elba) and the Man in Black (Matthew McConaughey) are locked in an eternal standoff. Meanwhile, Jake (Tom Taylor), a young dreamer who everyone else thinks is crazy, finds a portal into this place and teams up with Gunslinger in order to prevent the tower from toppling.

This is one of those frustrating genre flicks that manages to feel overstuffed and underdeveloped at the same time. And for all the awkward exposition that's tossed around, everything in this western sci-fi world feels very vague, nondescript, and one-dimensional -- much like the story's main character Jake, who's as indistinct of a protagonist as they come -- with nothing but a blank "chosen one" tag on his head. Idris Elba is great for what he has to work with here, and his character is undoubtedly cool, but his Death in a Suit foil Matthew McConaughey seems remarkably out of place.

Some nice scenery and unique set designs pop up along the way. And there's monsters and demons and people with tearaway flesh and teleporting and prophetic visions, but none of it ever amounts to anything too terribly interesting. There might be a compelling story to tell in here somewhere, but the execution is faulty--making this version an unstable, crumbling dud.

( 4.5/10 )

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