John Darabont's THE MIST
Movie review by Dennis D. McDonald
Based on a Stephen King novella, The Mist is what is generally referred to as “genre horror.”
That’s appropriate. Story elements are generic. Small-town folks are trapped in a local grocery store by a strange mist that harbors deadly monsters. As time passes increasingly deadly attacks occur. We watch as factions emerge among the survivors with opposing views on “Why this is happening to us?” and “What can we do about it if anything?”
Given that it’s based on a King story we know in advance that we’re going to see a lot of different “normal” people and how they react to extraordinary circumstances — and to the steadily increasing body count.
You can be forgiven if you come to this movie with low expectations given the above outline. As written and directed by John Darabont of “Shawshank Redemption” fame, though, we get an engaging and well produced story that is downright scary in parts and disturbing in others.
Sure, we get an occasional stereotype here and there with Marcia Gay Harden’s crazy evangelical control freak leading the list. But this is balanced by surprisingly effective creature effects that are headed by an absolutely fantastic in-store attack by frightening flying creatures that are repulsively nasty looking.
Be warned that not everything is explained. Nor is everything tied up neatly and happily at the end. This is scary-guy Stephen King at work here and writer-director Darabont does not pull any punches. Highly recommended!
Review copyright (c) 2015 by Dennis D. McDonald