Film, Review

The Dark Tower review – an unremarkable fantasy movie

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By Pierangelly Del Rio Martinez


Jake Chambers, is an eleven-year-old tormented by his dreams of a Man in Black, a dark tower he seeks to destroy, and his nemesis, a gunslinger. His concerned mother, convinced that the tormenting dreams are a consequence of his father’s death, decides to send him away to a centre where he will be treated. Jake runs await and finds himself transported from New York to a deserted landscape, Mid-World, where he meets the Gunslinger and learns his visions were true, as well as the menace of the Man in Black.

High-tech-portals, parallel words, monsters, a dark tower that is the balance of the universe and a quest to save it from evil. On a first picture, The Dark Tower is everything a science fiction and fantasy enthusiast could ask for. However, despite the good vision, the movie never manages to take off. Most of the negative criticism the movie has received, mention the lack of loyalty to the source material, a fantasy epic written by Stephen King, told in eight volumes. As someone, who hasn’t read all of the books, I can’t go too deep into that. But, as someone who has watched the movie, I can say The Dark Tower isn’t entirely bad.

One of the good points was its premise in general. We’ve got the overly familiar tropes of the fantasy genre as previously mentioned and the whole good versus evil conflict. However, this inflicts a nostalgic feeling which makes The Dark Tower appealing. The problem is that the mythology of the multiple words, the monsters and the race of the gunslingers aren’t given enough time to take form and adapt in the story.

Another good point is Idris Elba’s casting as Ronan, the last gunslinger. Mysterious, stoic and simply badass; Ronan is a solitary man whose only goal is to find the Man in Black and take revenge for the murder of his father. He makes an interesting hero and manages to shine in the action-loaded scenes. Apart from Ronan, the other characters are one-dimensional and simplistic. Matthew McConaughey as Walter Padic, the Man in Black, isn’t given enough development or background story to become a memorable villain, which feels like a waste of good casting.

For some, The Dark Tower will entertain, but it will never be perfect as it fails to raise interest for a possible sequel and ultimately, becoming an unremarkable fantasy movie.

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Pierangelly Del Rio

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