Monday, October 21, 2019

Spook Out! Day 20 ~ Pet Sematary (2019)

Amazon Says...
"After the Creed family moves to rural Maine, they stumble upon an ancient burial ground with sinister powers. When tragedy strikes, a perilous chain of events unleashes an unfathomable evil."

I Say...
Grieving parent grasps at deadly straws and makes a bad situation far worse.

Horror Type...

Main Players...
Jason Clarke as Dr. Louis Creed (Grieving Dad)
John Lithgow as Jud Crandall (Kindly But Irresponsible Neighbor)
Jeté Laurence as Ellie Creed (Daddy's Girl)

I liked...
  • the heckin'-ominous vibe--this film has atmosphere for days
  • this iteration of Church the Cat (played by, among others, Leo and Tonic)--wonderful makeup and extensive training made for a truly spooky onscreen kitty!
  • the BIG switcheroo from both book and original 1989 film adaptation--purists have balked but I think the change makes for a far more credible, realistic, and frightening killer (friggin' Stephen King liked it, so all you haterz can just go whine into your pillows about it) (I'm deliberately not specifying what this big change is--if you've seen the 1989 version and then see the 2019 one, you'll know exactly what I'm referencing)
  • the well-paced, slow-burning script
  • the excellent acting, by all (especially Lithgow's understated but still deeply affecting execution of the classic line, "Sometimes dead is better.")

The Meh...
  • I really liked that the filmmakers opted to have a person of color play the iconic ghost of Victor Pascow but then they hardly used him in the story at all, which was disappointing.
  • The guy who played Louis had a peculiar hint of an accent that piqued me enough to stop the movie and find out where he was from (Australia). That accent needs a bit of work, friend.

Would I recommend it...?
Yes, and I already look forward to watching it again on a cold winter's night, with some spiked hot chocolate by my side.

Look, I know some folks were ticked when they heard about Pet Sematary being remade. I was one of them, until I learned that John Lithgow had been cast as Jud--I knew then that it would not only be good, but special. And not only is it a great film, but it's a vast improvement over the '89 version--the production, acting, makeup, effects, settings, and writing are all far superior. Especially the acting, and don't get me wrong, I love me some Dale Midkiff (rawr!) and liked his work in the orig version, but the first Ellie was pretty frickin' annoying, and what they had to do to make the first Gage a killer rendered him ridiculous (except for that great line, "Now I want to play with eeeeeYEEEEEEEWWWWWWWW..."). I love the campy, cheesy goodness of the first version and I'm sure I'll still watch it to the bitter end every time I catch it on TV. But I do think the 2019 version rocks the casbah harder than the first. 

My Grade: A
Rotten Tomatoes Scores: Tomatometer=57%, Audience Score=34%

Details, Schmeetails...
I Watched Pet Sematary on Amazon (the Rotten Tomatoes page linked above provides links to other host sites)
Pet Sematary's Wikipedia Page (Contains Spoilers)

This concludes day 20 of


  1. I'm not a Steven King fan. The only book I've liked is 11/22/63, the anti-Steven King as I see it. So having been forced to watch Cujo and Christine, I doubt I'll watch this. I forgot about the Dead Zone, which I did watch and like, but I think a lot was due to Christopher Walken and the rest of the pretty fine cast.

    1. Well, of course, Walken! :-)

      One of my fave King adaptations is Silver Bullet - I think you could enjoy that (have you seen it?).

    2. It doesn't sound familiar. I'll check it out.

  2. I'm the opposite to Sara. I LOVE King. I have a whole bookshelf dedicated to him...HA! I'm sure I saw the original ages ago but can't quite remember it. However, when they announced the remake, not only was I excited, I realised I the book wasn't included in my collection. I had to remedy that, grabbed a copy and stuck it on my TBR list. I am literally reading it now, and wanting to finish it before watching the film. Have you watched the new IT! If not, add both chapter 1 and 2 to your list if you're a king fan :)

    1. I haven't seen It yet--I have to admit to having a clown phobia. :-)


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