movie buff

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 02 September, 2007, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 02 September, 2007, 12:00am


Director: Mikael Hafstrom. The Swedish director's earlier work Evil (Ondskan), a movie about school bullying, was nominated for a Best Foreign Language Film Oscar in 2004.

Starring: John Cusack, Samuel L. Jackson

The story: The film is based on a short story of the same name by American horror, suspense and fantasy writer Stephen King.

A horror novelist (John Cusack) checks into suite 1408 in a New York City hotel, a room which is famous for supposedly being haunted, to do research for his latest book, Ten Nights in Haunted Hotel Rooms.

Jackson plays the hotel manager.

The writer: King is arguably one of the best known American writers of the second half of the 20th century.

His writing is not considered 'literature' - there was uproar in literary circles when he received The National Book Foundation's Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters in 2003.

But his ability to churn out page-turners that venture into uncharted territories of the human psyche, particularly that of adolescents, is commendable.

He is also a shrewd writer who can master a wide variety of literary genres. His epic The Dark Tower series is a melting pot of popular literature styles, combining elements of Western, horror, fantasy, suspense and science fiction.

King and movies: A friend of filmmaker George Romero (Night of the Living Dead), the writer seldom has a problem with his stories being adapted into movies, saying that novels and movies are like 'apples and oranges'.

His first-published novel Carrie, a story about a socially backward teenage girl with psychic powers, is one of his most influential novels. It was adapted for the screen by Brian De Palma in 1976.

The movie, De Palma's breakthrough film in terms of box office success, turned out to be a blockbuster and horror classic that spawned a sequel and even a TV remake in 2002.

Other notable King's movies include Christine (1983), which was directed by horror master John Carpenter. A supernatural tale about an antique automobile possessed by evil, while it's hardly a Carpenter classic, the B-movie is a cult classic.

Misery, published in 1987 and adapted for the screen in 1990, was a box office and critical success.

A romance novel writer abducted by his number one fan, a former nurse accused of murdering her patients. Actress Kathy Bates' scary portrayal of the captor won her an Academy Award in 1990.

Ironically, King's most hated film adaptation of his novels is The Shining (1980), directed by late film master Stanley Kubrick. The film is considered by many moviegoers as the best movie ever based on a King novel.