Wednesday, July 09, 2003

Dolores Claiborne


A Video Review of Dolores Claiborne

Copyright 2003 Glenn Walker

Stephen King is a gifted writer. No, that's not quite right, it's an amazing understatement. King is the world's best selling author. He's also one of my favorites. If you've read him you know how he writes. Most of the stuff happens in people's heads. This is very hard to translate to film. This is why I shudder every time Hollywood brings one of his works to the big screen. They very rarely get it right.

The book of "Dolores Claiborne" was the rather disjointed if not entertaining life story of an abused wife who had had enough and finally fought back. The book covers decades. That's a hard thing to do in a film. So Hollywood changed the thrust of the story to a murder mystery with a mother and daughter's relationship at its center. The story is all still there just from a different perspective and additional information. It's really not as bad as previous King adaptations.

Kathy Bates, who has appeared in quite a few King works most notably Misery for which she won an Oscar, plays the title character and Jennifer Jason-Leigh is her daughter. Christopher Plummer does an interesting turn as the detective after Dolores, his affected Maine accent sadly diluting his acting ability.

Dolores Claiborne isn't a horror movie despite who wrote it. There is some pretty intense domestic violence and a couple of bizarre dissolves but no monsters that go bump in the night. It's not the book but it's not bad either. See it.

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