Second film adaptation of King’s book after 1986’s Uncontrollable Paranormal Phenomena. That movie there, starring Drew Barrymore, wasn’t a masterpiece, and neither is this new adaptation, despite a beautiful score by the great John Carpenter.
To adapt Stephen King for cinema, directors and fans know this well, it always involves its problems. And the novel “The incendiary” (in Italy published by Sperling & Kupfer) had already been brought to the cinema in the past with at least questionable results.
That film there, the Uncontrollable paranormal phenomena from 1984, Drew Barrymore protagonist, Mark L. Lester to directwas originally to be directed by John Carpenter; but then, in the face of commercial results not judged sufficient by the production of that indisputable masterpiece that it is The thingthe project was stolen from him.
Is exactly Carpentera quarter of a century later, he took a little revenge by signing in this new one Firestarter a quite sumptuous and downright uplifting soundtrackwhich is undoubtedly the greatest strength of the whole filmand who openly declares his desire to place himself in the wake of the genre film of the seventies / eighties cinema
The weakest point, however, is that of a miscasting which, for me, is unbelievable. Do not Ryan Kiera Armstrong instead of Drew Barrymorenot Gloria Reuben which declines “Cap” Hollister in the feminine, much less Sydney Lemmon as mom or Michael Greyeyes in those of Rainbirdbut Zac Efron.
Zac Efronone who until the day before yesterday was a lifeguard in Baywatch and the idiot in Mike & Dave – A stunning weddingand to whom the role of has been entrusted here AdamCharlie’s dad.
To script, in Firestarterthere is Scott Teemswhich is the same as that great movie of Halloween Killsand in hindsight the script is not badin the way he reworks the source material, which is King’s novel, and in which he establishes all new trajectories in the triangle that is formed between Charlie, his father and Rainbird.
The plot, basically, is more or less that of the novel, with Charlie and his parents all equipped with ESP on the run from the very bad secret government organization that would like to lock up the incendiary child to study and exploit her for who knows what terrible purposes; with Charlie and his father on a lonely runaway after Rainbird, victim and killer of the evil organization, kills his mom and sets out on their trail, until an ending – it’s not a spoiler, come on – where Charlie’s powers completely destroy the organization itself.
But, in fact, it is the role of Rainbirdthe role in which he ends up placing himself in relation to the organization and Charlie, and also to Charlie in his own, which here aims to open up new areas of reflection, concerning solidarity between victims, and the hypothesis of a different future, while Andy opts for the extreme sacrifice for a good purpose.
A bit tortuous but not without interest, this discourse, which however emerges a little late, as it seems to wake up late Keith Thomasdirector of Firestarterfrom a widespread numbness that characterizes at least two thirds of films, and that makes one think that, after all, Charlie’s problems are those of a young girl today who lacks the internet.
Even in the last third, and also in the finale in which Charlie bursts where he must and is known to break in, and things get more tense and eventful, paradoxically, this film always seems to lack the spark, the energy, the heatin spite of the fire that flares up from the very first shots.
It must be said, however, that to the King himself, to Stephen King himselfFirestarter seems to be liked. While, speaking of the soundtrack, the homonymous piece by Prodigy It does not appear. Know this and make this information what you want.