The Dead Zone : 7.3?! Are you guys nuts?

7.3?! Are you guys nuts?

SPOILERS AHEAD!

I know there's already a thread for "I didn't like it" but it was created about 4 years ago so you'll excuse me for starting another one.

I just watched this on TV tonight and thought it was terrible. It had a nice concept: guy wakes from coma to find he can tell the future etc. The whole concept was pulled off without any drama or drive though.

Basically all that happened in the movie was the main character ended up going from situation to situation using his powers until he was forced to save the future and kill a senator. This wasn't really a story. A story is when characters change, situations change, there is friction. Where was the friction in this story? There was none. They tried to add a little drama with the ex-girlfriend subplot but that never worked as you never truly care for their relationship or for the main character.

Christopher Walken's character is just so unsympathetic. You don't care for him. When his doctor says his powers will eventually kill him, you don't care. When you know he can't be with the woman he loves, you don't care. When he dies at the end, you don't care.

The events in the film were held together with coincidences and sometimes didn't even matter. At the start he helps the police track down a killer (who, coincidentally is one of the policemen) but what purpose does this have? None. It's just there for the sake of it, like the rest of the film. What purpose does the part of the movie have where he's helping the child to learn? None.

The point is, events happen in the story, but the characters never change, so there is no story, just a series of events. Usually in a proper story the events create change. Not here though.

Oh and there were a few plotholes / major coincidences / face palm moment going on:
- His ex-girlfriend ends up being one of the Senators aides and just so happens to end up at his door. Yeah right.
- They hold a parade for the senator RIGHT OUTSIDE HIS HOUSE, just so he can shake the senators hand and move the film forward.
- He gets shot by an old woman early on, the old woman then gets killed. He shook the old womans hand earlier though, surely he'd have seen her getting killed and thus would have known he was going to get shot?
- He tells his doctor that he can see into the future and thus can change the future. He then asks the doctor if he could go back in time and kill Hitler, would he do it? The doctor doesn't put two and two together and think "maybe he's thinking of killing someone."

Re: 7.3?! Are you guys nuts?

Okay, why would you list flaws like the holding of the parade right outside his door as a criticism? We're talking about a movie about a guy who can see the future, and you're going to tell me the fact that his girlfriend was one of the senators aids was too unrealistic for you!?

Re: 7.3?! Are you guys nuts?

I love this movie

Re: 7.3?! Are you guys nuts?

You're right though, 7.3? people must be crazy, this film deserves an 8.0 at least! its a brilliant film! :op

Re: 7.3?! Are you guys nuts?

Agreed, one of the best horror movies!

Re: 7.3?! Are you guys nuts?

This is one of my all-time favorites, I'd say it at LEAST deserves a 7.7! This is one of Walken's best performances in my opinion.

Re: 7.3?! Are you guys nuts?

Well, I gave it a 10! I'm trying to give ratings straight from the heart, and this is simply one of the best horror movies made. I'm not generally a Cronenberg fan, but still he has made two of my favorite horror movies; Dead Zone and The Fly.

Re: 7.3?! Are you guys nuts?

I gave it a 9, one of the best movies of the genre!

Re: 7.3?! Are you guys nuts?

Yeah, it is, and maybe 9 is more appropriate! It's not perfect. And no movie is, so I don't give many 10's.

Sometimes I wonder if I I'm not going to give any 10's, to express that there's still so much to go on in making movies.

Re: 7.3?! Are you guys nuts?

I liked it too. I guess it's not the typical horror/sci-fi 'rollercoaster' film, and requires one to think. It has a subtle uneasy feel throughout the film. I disagree with the original poster who thought Walken's character was 'unsympathetic'. I truly believe this was one of his more dramatic performances.

Re: 7.3?! Are you guys nuts?

this movie was awesome....straight to the point...great editing...never dragging, very professionally done

and the music was just as good - a perfect classic - just like exorcist

Re: 7.3?! Are you guys nuts?

7.3 is ridiculous, I gave it a 9.



__________

"Angels to some, demons to others..... Now you must come with us!"

Re: 7.3?! Are you guys nuts?

Just rated it a 10.0! Lots of luck to you!

Re: 7.3?! Are you guys nuts?

yeah, I'll give it a 10, too. cheers!

Re: 7.3?! Are you guys nuts?

Yep 10 from me too. This film and especially that ending has stuck with me for DECADES.

Re: 7.3?! Are you guys nuts?

Have to agree, 7.3 rating is ridiculous. Should be at least an 8!

You can't palm off a second-rater on me. You gotta remember I was in the pink!

Re: 7.3?! Are you guys nuts?

"- He gets shot by an old woman early on, the old woman then gets killed. He shook the old womans hand earlier though, surely he'd have seen her getting killed and thus would have known he was going to get shot? "

I take all of your points and while I disagree with them, you're entitled to them.
On the point that I have quoted, Smith was seeing her past not her future, and even if he had seen her future, he can only change it if there is that dead zone that he mentions to the doctor later.

Re: 7.3?! Are you guys nuts?

What dead zone? The "dead zone" that the movie's (and book's) title refers to is the area in Smith's brain that was injured/affected by his accident and resulting coma.

Re: 7.3?! Are you guys nuts?

"Smith was seeing her past not her future."

Agree 100%. There is a hint that Smith can almost control what he sees (past, present, or future) depending upon what he needs / wants to see the most. In some cases, he 'sees' the subject's past. In at least one other case, he sees the present (something going on at the same time, but elsewhere, e.g. the house fire). Finally, we know he can also see possible future outcomes (and in both of those cases, that outcome was actually changed). With the old woman, he saw her recent past ONLY ("You knew?!?"). As a result, he did NOT see her immediate FUTURE (him getting shot but surviving; her getting shot and dying). Thus, not a plot hole. If anything, it reinforced the plot. Case closed.

Re: 7.3?! Are you guys nuts?

just saw it again after many years. and yes, 7.3 seems wrong, so i gave it a 8.

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Re: 7.3?! Are you guys nuts?

I agree, 7.3 is too low, I gave it a 9. there is an eerie quality to this film, and a sense of romance that I love. I think walken's character is really cool, and unique in film. I can;t believe anyone can slag this film off, but each to his own.

Re: 7.3?! Are you guys nuts?

"I just watched this on TV tonight and thought it was terrible."
thats your opinion, nobody needs to hear it, and nobody cares

Re: 7.3?! Are you guys nuts?

It's your opinion that noone wants to hear it though....you're entitled to an opinion and I'm not?

Re: 7.3?! Are you guys nuts?

of course you're entitled to an opinion...that is not what he said...he said that nobody wants to hear it and that we don't care for it.... and he's right.
I just rated this movie 9/10...but that's just my opinion.

Re: 7.3?! Are you guys nuts?

I don't care for his opinion, so why should I also have to hear his?

Like it on not I've posted on a message board which is used to discuss movies. There's no rule saying I can't discuss a negative view of the movie. I'm not trolling, I'm putting my points across as to why I think it's a bad movie in the vague hope that someone else will reply back with something other than "OMG! UR OPINION IS *beep* I DON'T AGREE!"

Re: 7.3?! Are you guys nuts?

"I don't care for his opinion, so why should I also have to hear his?

Like it on not I've posted on a message board which is used to discuss movies. There's no rule saying I can't discuss a negative view of the movie. I'm not trolling, I'm putting my points across as to why I think it's a bad movie in the vague hope that someone else will reply back with something other than "OMG! UR OPINION IS *beep* I DON'T AGREE!" "


----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Of course everyone is entitled to an opinion including you.

But you are not entitled to say that everyone who likes this movie is 'nuts'
and that's the headline of your post.

So if u call names to people, u should have guts to take back some too.
'you idiot'.

(see, i called u one too !!)
:-)



I'll sleep when I am dead

Re: 7.3?! Are you guys nuts?

Ok, fair point.

I think from now on when I dislike a movie I'll use the title "7.3?! I can't believe it!"

But for some reason I think I'll have the same problems and people will still moan.

Re: 7.3?! Are you guys nuts?

well, i can assure you I won't be one of them :-)

I'll sleep when I am dead

Re: 7.3?! Are you guys nuts?

I dont get why all the big fuss about the rating...I mean come on,7.3 is just a little above average,maybe you mean it deserves a 0?

Re: 7.3?! Are you guys nuts?

I´ve got to agree with most of Danielbaird comments. I never saw the film before and even taking in count the time it was produced I found the story weak and you don´t need to have past trough a comma to predict most of it.

Re: 7.3?! Are you guys nuts?

I just watched this movie and I must say that it has its moments, but it left me on my appetite. I agree with many of your comments. There are too many loose threads and the plot is incredibly naive and weak. Ill-conceived story that could have been so much greater. Take just the central character teaching to the boy at home. Once he has pre-empted the boy's death thanks to his powers, that's it. The build-up of this relationship between Walken and the boy takes too much place and has too much potential for it to be just left pending. Same thing for the ex-fiancee: she still loves him so much (as the ending makes clear), but it remains so peripheral to the central plot that it fails to make sense and really connect with the movie watcher.

Stephen King is responsible for the story, so one cannot even blame the flaws on a bad adaptation of a novel to the movie format. No, it's simply a good idea that would have deserved a much better fate.

Stuff that shouts: 'Remake' out loud .....

That being said: I love Cronenberg's movies and style big time but I have to consider 'The Dead Zone' as a quickie and a raw draft to be forgotten. From a director as gifted as Cronenberg, we are entitled to expect so much more !

Good things about the movie, now:
- The atmosphere, very Cronenberg-ian, that manages to disturb us here and there
- There is a nice poetic quality in the way this is filmed, in the settings, in the camera work. But hey! That's the Cronenberg factor again that works all the time !
- Walken does a solid job with his role. Without him, chances are this would have been a turnip.

To me, I give it a 6/10 (with deep regrets)

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Re: 7.3?! Are you guys nuts?

Sheen's performance is so phony - it looked like he was about to bust out in laughter after each outburst.

Re: 7.3?! Are you guys nuts?

10 again!!! I loved it!!!

Re: 7.3?! Are you guys nuts?

yea i like this film as well why 6/10 with deep regrets?6/10 is quite good?

Re: 7.3?! Are you guys nuts?

Have to agree, 7.3 rating is ridiculous. Should be at least an 5!

Re: 7.3?! Are you guys nuts?

I found John Smith to be an extremely sympathatic character, one who struggled in with his new found "gift" and his profound sense of loss, loss of his relationship with Sarah, loss of his job, his 5 years, and even his humanity. The scenes with Walken and Brooke Adams were extremely poignant. Not to mention the very best line in the film:

"THE ICE...IS GONNA BREAK!"

Great stuff. I love this movie. I rated it a 9.

Re: 7.3?! Are you guys nuts?

I *beep* love this movie. Great story, great soundtrack, and it features my favourite superhero of all time - Johnny Smith.

Re: 7.3?! Are you guys nuts?

I agree with everything in the OP, except for your "few plotholes / major coincidences / face palm" (see my signature).

I'd read the book before, and that felt like a seamless read. This adaptation was very uncomfortable.

---
Instant fail words: overrated, major flaw, plot hole

Re: 7.3?! Are you guys nuts?

Did we see the same film?? I wonder now.

The ex-girlfriend subplot, as you term it, is not a subplot: It IS the plot! What I mean: The intense love that you can feel the two characters have for each other and their destiny to be together (or to *not* be together, as it turns out)is what catapults this whole story! If Johnny had stayed at his fiancee's home that fateful evening, nothing of this would have happened. But it was meant to be! The theme of the film is fate and whether it's changeable. Same as when the doctor can't bring himself to talk to his mother on the phone: He feels it was "not meant to be" for them to be together...(He even says so)
It was "meant to be" that Johnny was having his first vision with the nurse's daughter (the girl was meant to be saved) and it was meant to be that the little boy, Chris, was introduced to him so that he would be saved later on by his intervention (the boy became convinced that he had a point and stayed home). It was meant to be that the sherrif asks for his help and the incident brings out the same themes.
Also it was meant to be that he met the senator, as this is a constant throughout the movie (an "idee fixe" if you will): he meets him at the house of Chris's father, the posters are smack outside his door, the enlisters/supporters ring upon his door to mention him (and thus the other constant in the film surfaces again: the ex-girlfriend), he sees him in the parade...It's *meant to be* that the two come in contact and the question is whether Johnny will act on it or not!

If you were searching for an action-packed film, then I can understand how such points might not make for an enjoyable evening. The film is subtle and plays on the emotional plane more than anything, about the unfairness of life.
The points you mention as "coincidences" fall into what I explained before and they were deliberately placed to show nuances of the characters or to imprint the idea of fate and whether it can be changed:
The killer's mother (the old woman) knew, but she didn't do anything to change fate's course, protective of her son and thus her personal interests. The doctor on the other hand is someone who would take matters into his hands and replies to the theoretical question in such terms ~that he would sacrifice his personal interests for the greater good (btw, lots of people ask such hypothetical questions and it doesn't mean that they go out killing people afterwards!)

I therefore found the Johnny character deeply tragic (in the old dramatic sense) and thus *very* sympathetic: A person entrapped in a situation that far exceeds him and his fight against those forces which will ultimately destruct him; yet ethical balance will return to the world thanks to his fight.

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Re: 7.3?! Are you guys nuts?

Agree with the OP 100%. Boring, dull film. Dull bland characters, none of it worked at all.

I wanted to hear the OP's opinion, and to me his opinion is right. This was a terrible film, one of the worst mainstream films over the last 30 years. Very weak on every level.

I gave it a 2, and i don't care that it's 7.3 but i think it deserves a 2 so that's what it got.

I thought Walken was dire. Staring blankly and then pulling an odd wooden looking grimace or two is no way to earn your living as a professional actor. He's lucky he gets away with it here.


Re: 7.3?! Are you guys nuts?

Well, everyone's entitled to their own opinion.
My opinion is that the statement that this is 'one of the worst mainstream films over the last 30 years' is possibly one of the most stupid and ridiculous things I've heard for a very long time. But like I say, each to their own.

Re: 7.3?! Are you guys nuts?



A classic. A solid 10.

THE ICE IS GONNA BREAK !

Re: 7.3?! Are you guys nuts?

You are a brain disease addled *beep* Walken's vengeful ghost will rule you in the afterlife.

Re: 7.3?! Are you guys nuts?

So the point was for Walken to kill the evil senator? If everything was meant to be leading up to the crash, then why wouldn't the god or universe (or whatever put this plan into motion), just make the evil senator get into a car crash and die?

Why go through Walken at all if that's the point? Unless I misunderstood what you're saying. But if 'everything was meant to be so the senator could die', it makes no sense...



Yup...makeup and candy...in the...trunk... -Blood Car

Re: 7.3?! Are you guys nuts?

i gave it a 6.8988999342814




Where there's smoke, there's barbecue!

Re: 7.3?! Are you guys nuts?

Well the book was kind of crap as well, so it stands to reason that the film would be.

Contrary to popular belief, it is impossible to overdose on marijuana... though many have tried.

Re: 7.3?! Are you guys nuts?

Everyone's entitled to their own opinion (as it's been said many time here). I'm not one of those people that thinks that you should only post on boards for movies or tv show you love or that if you post a negative opinion on a board you are automatically a troll. That would be boring with everyone sitting around praising the thing and agreeing with each other. The only thing I'm getting from the OP' comments is "it's boring" and "I don't care. . ." which isn't very specific.

I think this movie's intensity comes from subtle emotional events and that's what's throwing the OP off. Maybe the OP is just into glaring changes, overstatement (and that's not a criticism). The "intensity" of this movie is in Johnny's having to deal with being able to see things about people. Imagine having to relive other people's horrors. Whenever he touches someone, he usually has to witness something extremely painful--witnessing a brutal murder, a suicide, the horror of Dodd's life and his psycho mother, a child drowning, World War III. If he doesn't, if he is denies his ability and tries to avoid the responsibility he has in using that ability, he wouldn't help anyone. An interesting note, on the dvd extras, someone (I think it's Cronenberg) is talking about how in order to get that startled look on CW's face, he carried a gun around throughout the filming (with blanks, I think) and whenever he wanted CW to do the startled reaction from his visions, he'd (Cronenberg) would unexpectedly fire off the gun nearby.

The intensity is also in his relationship with Sarah, how he is still in love with her. To him he was out for a day. His feelings are still the same and he has to accept, what must be to him, an abrupt end of the relationship and her being married with a child with someone else, not to mention his physical injuries and having to learn to walk all over again. The coma had to have drained him physically. I mean, it's a drama (and suspense). Maybe the OP was expecting something else? Action? Sci-fi? Horror? There are changes that occur in the movie. They are just very subtle and you have to pay close attention.

I don't think Sarah and Walt working on Stillson's campaign is all that odd. It's not unusual for people to volunteer for that kind of thing. I went into Obama's campaign headquarters in my town during the campaign. People in town were working there and some of those people came around my neighborhood knocking on doors to drum up support. Sarah and Walt live in that town and they support Stillson. What's so unbelievable?

SPOILER:
The biggest problem I have with the movie (I gave it a 9 instead of a 10 because of this) is the scene where Johnny is having the vision of Stillson starting WWIII. I can't help but wonder why the General caves in so easily. He's a General for cryin' out loud! He should have some kajones and stand up to Stillson in some way. He could have picked up the screen and smashed into the floor. He could have punched Stillson out. He's an old guy but he's got to have some skills being career military. He just seemed so pathetic. There was a crowd of people outside. The General was ten feet way from the door. Why didn't he run for the door and tell the people outside that Stillson was insane? I mean, we're talking about starting a nuclear war here. I'm sure those people would have tackled Stillson to stop him. I guess I prefer the vision Johnny gets in the tv show better because he just sees destruction in general and knows that it is connected to Stillson which makes it less complicated or unbelievable.

Buffy: "Alright, I get it. You're evil. Do we have to chat about it all day?" -Amends

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