Doctor Sleep (2019)

Doctor Sleep is a 2019 psychological and supernatural horror movie directed by Mike Flanagan, with the always excellent Ewan McGregor in the main role. 

The film is based on the novel by Stephen King, Doctor Sleep. Released in 2013 as a sequel to The Shining (also a classic horror movie), it follows the boy from that story, now an adult, as he struggles with his psychic powers and alcoholism. 

Dan Torrence (Ewan McGregor) is having a bad day (Doctor Sleep, 2019

All right, there is more to it than that. There is a group of life force vampires calling themselves The True Knot, psychic communication and a girl with immense powers. It is all very Stephen King, and that can be both a blessing and a curse. His world-building, with interconnecting stories and layers upon layers of background is hard to translate to film, and the film feels a bit disjointed as a result, especially in the second act. But at the same time, a feeling that we’re scratching the surface of something far bigger is hard to ignore.  

But, I generally liked the film. Ewan McGregor is one of my favorite actors, and he does a great job as the troubled Dan Torrance (you won’t see him cycling around on a trike, though). The antagonists are interesting, but as with most Stephen King novels (which are usually very long), I got a strong feeling that there are more to tell, details and back story we didn’t get in the film. 

The True Knot… psychic vampires hobos? (Doctor Sleep, 2019)

But all in all, Doctor Sleep was an enjoyable and often disturbing film with great acting and interesting story. I think I need to go back at some point and watch The Shining and Doctor Sleep back to back, though.

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