Top Ten Stephen King Film Adaptations

Today is Stephen King's birthday! He became 67 years old - only one year older than my father. I'm so happy he's still doing his thing. I could go on and discuss how much his books inspired me but you can read all about it here. What I'll be doing instead is listing my top ten favorite movies based on his books.

1. Carrie (1976)
I saw the movie first and then read the novel years later. As is always the case, the film adaptation changed many things from the source material. However, in this case, each medium works separately and complement each other. I loved Carrie in both the film and the book. As for the remakes, I'm going to pretend they didn't happen.

2. The Shining (mini-series) (1997)
I'm pretty sure I read the book first, saw Kubrick's version (hated it) and then Loved the mini-series. This version is much more closer to the book by far. Kubrick's version is the Jack Nicholson show with remnants of the original source material. Watched it a few years ago and I still dislike it. I haven't seen the mini-series in a long time. I do remember enjoying this version so much better.

3. Christine (1983)
I'll never forget watching this late night movie on ABC and being scared by this car. I was very young and I had fallen in love with Keith Gordon when I saw him in The Legend of Billie Jean (Fair is Fair!). I was excited to see him as the lead in this movie. It's also been a long time since I've seen this but I have fond memories watching Gordon and the beautiful red car duke it out on screen.

3. Cujo (1983)
I was on a Stephen King roll at the time I viewed this movie. I can't recall if I read the book or watched the movie first. Either way, both were terrifying - so good. King has such an amazing imagination that he can make anything as mundane as a mom and son stuck in a car from a rabid dog, compelling. Fantastic.

4. Firestarter (1984)
Young little Drew Barrymore in this film about pyrokinesis. Following along the lines of a supernatural element that King explored, this film was about a young girl that could start fires with her mind. I was entranced from beginning to end.

5. The Stand (1994)
I can't believe I read this 1,000 page + book before I saw the mini-series when I was 12! A huge fan of the massive novel, I hated the ending in the mini-series and I couldn't stand Molly Ringwald in the role of Frannie. I couldn't see it. But I haven't watched this in years as well, so it'd be nice to revisit. I enjoyed most of it during its first release.

6. Pet Semetary (1989)
Miko Hughes was in virtually every big time picture in the late 80s - early 90s And he was on Full House as well. I saw this when I had already been familiar with him on the show, not knowing this was his first role in a movie. He was so creepy and I was freaked out when I saw this. Still gives me the creeps. Well-done.

7. Stand By Me (1986)
Every time I hear Ben E. Lee's song, it's hard not to think of this film. A story about four boys on a trek to see a dead body while discovering themselves and their friendships is a great tale that's heartwarming for the emotions evoked. A solid picture with phenomenal performances across the board. I love this movie so much. Makes me miss River Phoenix every time.

8. Shawshank Redemption (1994)
I saw this after I read the novella from Different Seasons (my favorite!) and loved the movie just as much. Tim Robbins and Morgan Freeman's chemistry was so good in this movie. A true film gem.

9. Green Mile (1999)
Michael Clarke Duncan played Coffey - the friendly giant with the unexplained powers of healing in this film. Loved the ensemble cast and the story was so engrossing and interesting. Damn good movie.

10. It (2017)
I watched this adaptation recently and it was so much better than the 1990 version. Scarier, better acted, and the clown was scary as fuck. While it does take a lot to scare me, I can't front, when I got home, I had to check every doorway, have every light on in my room, to make sure I wasn't illuminating Pennywise about to scare me. A well done adaptation. Can't wait for Part Two next year!

*This was updated on 10/15/17 with the tenth adaptation I've enjoyed by Stephen King.

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