The first four books of The Dark Tower are arguably pure literary gold. The Lord of the Rings equivalent for many Generation X’ers.
With its mixture of fantasy, western, and horror elements Stephen King managed to concoct a narrative brew whose taste was so unique that few could easily place a label on it. He juxtaposed the quintessential picture of a hero with the unlikeliest (in society’s opinion anyway) and managed to turn the notions of heroism on its head. He would expand on the idea of an unlikely hero again and again particularly with series like The Bill Hodges Trilogy and Doctor Sleep but The Dark Tower will, for most, remain a favorite for giving us such layered and complex characters set against a backdrop of a universe only King could envision.
There were so many elements that made this series great, but if I had to push one attribute to the top of the stack…it would be…nuance. This coupled with a palpable unorthodoxy that gave the series an otherworldly, unique feel that has not been matched since. It was undeniably its own thing. It was undeniably Stephen King.
When I look at the trailer for this adaption written by Akiva Goldsman (Batman & Robin, A Beautiful Mind) and directed by Nikolaj Arcel (The Girl with The Dragon Tattoo Trilogy) I do not see nuance.
I do not see the unorthodox. I see something processed, distilled, and fermented. I see generic, Hollywood, swill.
They have taken something whose greatest strength was what it was…and made it something else.
The Dark Tower starring Idris Elba and Matthew McConaughey opens worldwide Aug 4th.