Stephen King on the Big Screen (Book)
The Shining. Carrie. Misery. These are just a few of the film adaptations that have been made from the terrifying and eerie work of novelist and short story writer Stephen King. It is nearly impossible to think of another author who has inspired so many, and such diverse filmmakers – yet there has never before been a work by a film specialist that focused solely on Stephen King. Mark Browning, in Stephen King on the Big Screen, takes a film-by-film approach to exploring why some adaptations of King’s work are more successful than others.
Browning discusses every single film adaptation given a global cinematic release – including films by such well-known directors as Stanley Kubrick, George A. Romero and David Cronenberg. His is the first book to consider in detail Sleepwalkers, Dreamcatcher and 1408 as well as the much-neglected portmanteau films and touchstones like The Shawshank Redemption and The Green Mile. In a highly readable and engaging style, Browning examines how different film directors have interpreted and translated the original literary texts into a new medium. Throughout, he reveals the elements of style and approach that have helped make King one of the world’s best-selling authors.
This entertaining and accessible guide to the complete corpus of Stephen King films is a must-have for fans of his fiction and of the many directors who have sought to capture his macabre stories and bizarre characters in cinematic form.
From 1976 to the present day, there have been over 45 films adapted from the spine-tingling works of Stephen King. In Stephen King on the Big Screen, Mark Browning addresses the question of why some of the film adaptations of the world’s best-selling author are much more successful than others.By focussing on the theoretical aspect of genre, Browning brings an original approach to familiar films and suggests new ways of viewing them. Although often associated with the macabre, King’s stories form the basis for dozens of narratives, which are clearly not horror from Stand By Me to Hearts in Atlantis. How are The Green Mile and The Shawshank Redemption successful as prison movies? How do Cujo and The Shining work as family dramas? Are Dreamcatcher and Christine merely updated 1950s B-movies? The book is the first written by a film specialist to consider every Stephen King film given a theatrical release, including work by Stanley Kubrick, David Cronenberg and George A. Romero and the first to consider in detail films like Creepshow, Sleepwalkers and 1408. The style, whilst critically rigorous, is designed to be accessible to discerning readers of King and fans of films based on his work.
Mark Browning currently lives and works as a teacher and freelance writer in Germany. He is the author of David Cronenberg: Author or Filmmaker?, also published by Intellect.