my Movie

Movie Details

Title:   Pet Sematary
Director:   Mary Lambert
Year:   1989
Genre:   Horror
Times Seen:   2
Last Seen:   08.23.14

Other Movies Seen By This Director (0)

Notes History
Date Viewed Venue Note
08.23.14Internet I thought I hadn't seen this in a long long time but as I started watching it I realized that it hasn't been so long after all... so it was really kind of a waste because I really don't like this movie very much. I like Fred Gwynne though... it's time to track down Disorganized Crime again. I used to love that movie when it was first out on vhs.

Anyway yeah... I hate the lead in this. he's a terrible actor. Really everyone but Fred Gwynne is terrible. But having an evil kid this young just didn't work. They have to cut the performance together and it comes off looking like an animal performance.

...Wish I would've checked this site before watching.
10.16.05Netflix I saw this a long time ago when it came out and remember thinking it wasn't too good, but since then I've read the book and also heard a few people talk about it like it's a gem of late-80s horror. Figured it's worth another watch because the book was fantastic, really one of King's best.

I think the main issue is that it's a B-movie based on an A-book. King, who's never really shared my tastes when it came to horror movies, wrote a screenplay that strips away all the nuance and motivation in the book (yes, the book has nuance and motivation. It's really great) and leaves the bare-bones plotline which, because we're not treated to any of said nuance or motivation, doesn't make any sense. Add incredibly award-worthy bad performances everyone but the kid and Fred Gwynne(especially from Denise Crosby) and you basically end up with a movie that needs a few beers and a midnight screening to be very enjoyable.

For instance. his cat dies, he buries it in the indian burial ground and it comes back with an ill temper and spooky eyes. Now everyone hates the cat because it's evil. Here's a great idea, bury my dead kid there too! A large portion of the book deals with the oppressive haze of mourning and turmoil that surrounds death and gives the main dude enough meat on his character to explain this choice, but it's just funny in the movie.

I know the whole book-is-better-than-the-movie thing is quite old, but this is really a shining example, along with several of Mick Garris' treatments of King's work, of how a literal translation from book to film more often than not does not work. This movie just doesn't make much sense. The book was so much about death and secrets... how men keep secrets from women and how death obliterates them all. In the book, Gage comes back with knowledge of secrets that Death lets him in on. It's tons creepier to know that whatever your kid is now, he knows WAY more than you. The movie never gets close to anything psychological like that... just an idiotic father making crazy decisions.

However, there are a few pretty nice gored scenes... especially the last one involving blood and puss and an eye socket, they kept the book's ending which is awesome, and The Ramones did the song. So that's maybe a grand total of 5-7 minutes of decent horror. That's more than I can say for the remake of The Fog.
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