Saturday, January 21, 2017

Maximum Overdrive (1986)

Maximum Overdrive (1986): adapted by Stephen King from his short story "Trucks"; directed by Stephen King; starring Emilio Estevez (Bill), Pat Hingle (Hendershot), Laura Harrington (Brett), and Yeardley Smith (Connie): Revisiting the infamous Maximum Overdrive after 30 years, I was struck by how generally not-awful it was. This may just be a product of 30 more years of bad horror movies. I don't know. 

Stephen King's one-and-done directorial effort is intermittently clumsy, poorly shot, and uneven in tone. But there are moments of startling gore and grue. And Emilio Estevez sells the shit out of his character: this might actually be his best performance. The movie's premise suffers a bit from King's expansion of the, ahem, possession of things from Just Trucks in his short story to Pretty Much Whatever the Plot Demands in the movie. Watch for a young Giancarlo Esposito's brief turn. And yes, that's the voice of Bart Simpson as the world's most annoying newlywed. Lightly recommended.

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