Movie Review: Doctor Sleep (2019)

Quote from Doctor Sleep by Dick Halloran

“You can put things from the Overlook away in boxes, but not memories. They are the real ghosts. You take them with you.”


Change is Good

dannyDoctor Sleep is an adaptation of Stephen King’s book by the same name.  It’s the sequel to The Shining.  You know the one with Jack Nicholson as Jack Torrance.  It was written and directed by Mike Flanagan with Warner Bros., Intrepid Pictures, and Vertigo Entertainment as the production companies.  The main cast includes Ewan McGregor as Dan Torrance, Rebecca Ferguson as Rose the Hat, Kyleigh Curran as Abra Stone, Cliff Curtis as Billy Freeman, Carl Lumbly as Dick Halloran, Alex Essoe as Wendy Torrance, Henry Thomas as The Bartender, Zahn McClarnon as Crow Daddy, Emily Alvn Lind as Snakebite Andi, Selena Anduze as Apron Annie, Robert Longstreet as Barry the Chunk, Carel Strucycken as Grampa Flick, Catherine Parker as Silen Sarev, James Flanagan as Diesel Doug, and Met Clark as Short Eddie.  The executive producers includes Akiva Goldsman, Stephen King, Roy Lee, D. Scott Lumpkin, and Kevin McCormick. The MPAA rating is R for disturbing and violent content, some bloody images, language, nudity and drug use.  It has a running time of 2 hours and 32 minutes. Doctor Sleep is a drama, fantasy, and horror movie about the aftermath of Dan Torrance seeing his father go crazy while staying at the Overlook Hotel.  The past continues to haunt and follow him as a barely functioning alcoholic as he meets a girl named Abra Stone.

Characters and Plot Summary


The movie opens in Florida where a girl, Violet, on a camping trip meets a woman wearing a hat.  She is never seen again and Danny survived childhood to become Dan. The year is now 2011 where Dan lives in New Jersey.  In the next state over in New York, Rose the Hat lures a teenage girl named Andi into their cult.  Meanwhile in New Hampshire, a young girl named Abra Stone is celebrating her birthday.  After Dan uproots himself, this time for New Hampshire, it doesn’t take long for him to find work at a hospice as an orderly.  Time progresses to 2019 and Dan is now sober and continues going to AA meetings with his friend, Cliff Curtis.  He continues connecting with Abra and Abra finally connects with the intrusive Rose the Hat.  As the The True Knot cult look for more shine to feed off, Dan and Abra realize both are in danger.  They concoct a plan to locate the cult and stop them from committing more murders.  Their plan is somewhat successful, but Rose will not stop until both of them are gone.  It ends where it all began: Overlook Hotel with Dan confronting his past memories, his telepathic powers, and his present/future. 

Watch the Trailer

Overall Evaluation

doctorsleep2I enjoyed the fitting of the past and present pieces in Doctor Sleep.  The recreation of Outlook Hotel was the best highlight and the most notable nod to Kubrick’s adaptation.  I was brought back to notable characters of The Bartender, The Bathtub Lady, Twins, Dick Halloran, Wendy Torrance, and young Danny. On the other hand, there’s a huge nod to the book version too.  It takes place at the end with Dan’s last hour or maybe minute decision.  The cult is definitely unnerving in how they survive and the scene with Bradley Trevor (played by Jacob Tremblay) is a great example.  Clearly not for young children, so as not to give them nightmares, but everyone liking a drama with hints of the fantasy and horror it is recommended.  A few scenes may have dragged on a little too long and a character who unexpectedly died was disappointing, but overall it was a great story with suitable pacing.  Therefore, I give it a 90%.

I rate Doctor Sleep Four Fingers.





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