Disclaimer: I’ve never read The Dark Tower series before. The reviews are based on what I watch.
Roland Deschain, the last Gunslinger, is locked in an eternal battle with Walter O’Dim, also known as the Man in Black. The Gunslinger must prevent the Man in Black from toppling the Dark Tower, the key that holds the universe together. With the fate of worlds at stake, two men collide in the ultimate battle between good and evil.
At the beginning of the film, we are presented with two sentences that explain a bit about the premise of the story. A tower stands in the middle of two worlds. It is said it can be destroyed with a child’s mind.
The scene changes, showing a group of children playing. Some adults watched while occasionally scratching their necks. The skin of their necks is peeling off. Then there’s a strange voice from the loudspeakers, followed by a sound that came from the bracelets worn by the children. Those, whose bracelet rang, walk toward the black building. There they sat in an odd chair connected to the machine. And as the adults activate the machine, an explosion of energy occurs and slips toward the tower. The scene ended, then we are introduced to Jake, the main character.
Based on what I read on the internet, this film only adapts some elements of one of the titles. The way the movie produced is exactly like Seventh Son, where producers and directors just take the main core of the whole story, then develop it. Perhaps for the fans of this series, the film adaptation seems to fail miserably. But for me who has never read his book, this movie is quite interesting.
The plot itself is a bit cliché, but I like the development. No long-winded, solid and full-packed with action scenes. The focus in the story is very clear: the last Gunslinger and psychic child fight the Man In Black.
Roland’s character is very well played by Idris Elba. So does Jake’s character. Although there are some dialogs that sounds stiff, but Tom Taylor, who play as Jake, was able to bring emotions into his performance.
Some critics argue that the film is failed, clichés, mediocre etc. Some even complains about the duration for a film that adapted from the work of renowned authors such as Stephen King. Another article also mentions that for the process of the film itself takes 10 years. So IMHO, it’s natural if some people concerns about the duration and content of the film being less interesting. Those effort after 10 years could be something more epic, considering this movie will be the opening for the TV version.
And I agree with the opinion that states Idris Elba’s acting is the biggest factor that saved this movie. His performance was most shining amongst other actors & actresses. I can see how his character grows become better person from his speech, body style and facial expressions. I think that the turning point for Roland’s character is when he and Jake discover the body of Lon and the ashes of Jake’s mother. From there, Roland’s ultimate goal changes, from just wanting revenge for his people to be the desire to save the Tower from destruction.
Overall, I enjoy this movie. There are several factors that I admit is making this film become failure, but on the other hand I’m happy because the story plot is focus and clear, without any hint of romance or sex. I can’t wait for the TV version, especially I want to see how far Tom Taylor, as newcomer in movie industry, will growing.
Director : Nikolaj Arcel
Production Company : MRC, Imagine Entertainment and Weed Road
Distributed by : Columbia Pictures
Release date : July 31, 2017 (Museum of Modern Art)
August 4, 2017 (United States)