Doctor Sleep has been hailed as worthy successor to The Shining. Stephen King says that he is "delighted for Mike Flanagan and company," over the ecstatic reviews. Flanagan's adaptation of King's sequel novel to The Shining has a lot to live up to, thanks to Stanley Kubrick's take on The Shining, which is widely considered to be one of the best horror movies of all time. As it turns out, King was right about wanting to get this story out there and it appears that Flanagan was the right person for the job. King had this to say about Doctor Sleep.
"Mike Flanagan is a talented director, but he's also an excellent storyteller. The movie is a good thing. You'll like this if you liked The Shining, but you'll also like it if you liked Shawshank. It's immersive."
It has already been a pretty amazing year for Stephen King adaptations on the big and small screens. However, one viewer believes that Doctor Sleep could be the best of the bunch. More than one person says that they weren't prepared for some of the emotional twists and turns, along with more thrilling aspects of the movie. "What a wonderful celebration of Kubrick, King & Mike Flanigan's career as well," concludes one early reaction.
Another early viewer says that they were "giddy" because Doctor Sleep is so good. Taking a book and adapting it for the big screen is no small feat, especially if the author is Stephen King. The viewer went on to say, "It's an excellent and faithful adaptation that makes smart changes - especially melding the '80 film and the sequel book - and the casting/performances are phenomenal." Putting Ewan McGregor into a role is usually going to come out with elevated results. The actor recently opened up about taking on the alcohol-fueled scenes in the movie and how close they hit to home, even after being sober for over 20 years.
"Brilliant, disturbing, impressive, clever, emotional, surprising, a visual delight," is the way another viewer described Mike Flanagan's Doctor Sleep. In addition to having adapt Stephen King's source material, Flanagan also had to worry about people comparing the movie to Stanley Kubrick's work. Instead of trying to make his movie in the style of Kubrick, the director wisely chose to go his own way with the source material. Another early review declares the movie to be, "spooky, emotional, ultimately optimistic. Not only a sequel to The Shining, but a response to it, an attempt to reconcile King and Kubrick."
It looks like Doctor Sleep is going to be a must-see for horror fans after all of these glowing early reviews. Taking on The Shining was a bold move, but it sounds like Mike Flanagan was able to elevate Stephen King's source material, which is incredibly rare when bringing a book to life on the big screen. Even King is happy with the results, so that has to tell you something. The horror icon usually keeps his mouth shut when he isn't into his adaptations, or he'll talk trash if he needs to. You can head over to Warner Bros. for ticketing info and check out some more early reactions below.
The first reactions to DOCTOR SLEEP are nothing short of ecstatic. Delighted for Mike Flanagan and company.— Stephen King (@StephenKing) October 26, 2019
DOCTOR SLEEP: Mike Flanagan is a talented director, but he’s also an excellent storyteller. The movie is a good thing. You’ll like this if you liked THE SHINING, but you’ll also like it if you liked SHAWSHANK. It’s immersive.— Stephen King (@StephenKing) October 23, 2019
It’s been a great yr for Stephen King adaptations but I think #DoctorSleep is the best of the bunch. Thrilled me in ways I wasn’t expecting, made me emotional at times & Rebecca Ferguson is ferocious. What a wonderful celebration of Kubrick, King & @flanaganfilm’s career as well. pic.twitter.com/jQ8ktEeUVE— Heatherface Wixson (@thehorrorchick) October 25, 2019
DOCTOR SLEEP: The boldest choice here is that Mike Flanagan doesn't even try to do Kubrick. He makes a Mike Flanagan movie: spooky, emotional, ultimately optimistic. Not only a sequel to THE SHINING, but a response to it, an attempt to reconcile King and Kubrick. Loved it.— Jacob Hall (@JacobSHall) October 25, 2019
As a huge fan of Kubrick's The Shining, King's books & Mike Flanagan, I'm giddy that Doctor Sleep is seriously GREAT. It's an excellent & faithful adaptation that makes smart changes — especially melding the '80 film & the sequel book — and the casting/performances are phenomenal pic.twitter.com/tvkDt3jonJ— Evil Eric Eisenberg (@eeisenberg) October 25, 2019
Fans of #TheShining are really gonna love #DoctorSleep. It's at its best when its fueled by follow-up. Starts slowly and descends into madness, just like its predecessor. One specific scene is really horrifying, some solid scares, and good performances across the board. pic.twitter.com/NnHcq1ia8Q— Brandon Davis (@BrandonDavisBD) October 25, 2019
#DoctorSleepMovie: A hallucinogenic horrorscape, @flanaganfilm channels King’s waking nightmares & familial trauma artfully. Crafts visceral, disquieting dread not too dissimilar to Kubrick’s masterpiece. McGregor & Ferguson give perfectly pitched performances.@DoctorSleepFilmpic.twitter.com/IF6YJhDBTz— Courtney Howard (@Lulamaybelle) October 25, 2019
Brilliant, disturbing, impressive, clever, emotional, surprising, a visual delight... but enough about me. #DoctorSleep is great, peeps. But bloody graphic with the violence in parts and very upsetting but so well done. I can see why Stephen King and team Kubrick approve. pic.twitter.com/tSHco2MZZi— Amanda in the Woods (@filmvsbook) October 25, 2019
In DOCTOR SLEEP, which I quite liked, Rebecca Ferguson's truly evil villain has a crustpunk carnie aesthetic and let me tell you...it works— Esther Zuckerman (@ezwrites) October 25, 2019