Doctor Sleep

Doctor Sleep is actually a sequel to The Shining, so if you haven’t seen The Shining or are not familiar with it, then this movie will have a lot going on that you are not going to understand. Although there is a lot going on, a new person seeing this film for the first time, will realize that the movie is referencing a past event, which may create interest in seeing The Shining, or it may not. Doctor Sleep takes places decades after the events at the Overlook Hotel where Jack Torrance lost his mind to the ghosts of the hotel. Jack’s son Danny, (Ewan McGregor) has the gift of the Shining, and he is now a grown man and an alcoholic. The Shining is some form of telepathy. Danny comes across a young girl named Abra Stone (Kyliegh Curran) who is also endowed with the Shining, and the two begin to communicate via writing on a black board using their mental powers. What they don’t realize, is that there is a group of people, led by a woman named Rose who feed on the Shining. Rose and her “Crew” spend much of the movie tracking down kids with the Shining and feeding on them. Rose discovers that Abra exists, and she realizes Abra is one of the most powerful wielders of the Shining she have ever seen. The crew begins to track Abra’s whereabouts, so they can have a feast of feasts on her. Abra with the help of Danny proves to be more capable than Rose or the Crew imagined, and a game of cat and mouse ensues. By itself, the movie doesn’t bring much new to the table with this genre. In a sense, the villains in this movie are vampires, but they don’t drink blood, they inhale “steam” the actual power that is the Shining. Rose and her crew look like traveling gypsies, and they are not scary. The only thing special that you see about them is that their eyes glow when they feed. The film eventually makes its way back to the Overlook Hotel for the grand finale, but the ending is never really in doubt and there are no real surprises. This is not a scary movie, nor is it really suspenseful. Typically, I would dismiss this film, however, if you are a fan of Stephen King and the worlds he has created via his books, then you know everything he has written has some connection to a larger universe. Since I read the Dark Tower series, I spent much of the movie wondering about the connection these vampire like creatures had to the overall Dark Tower Universe. There were so many ideas in this film that I would like to see explored. Where did Rose and the Crew come from? How does the Shining work? What will Abra do next? So many questions, but no answers. My wife and I enjoyed watching it, but you could definitely Save the Cash and Dash on this one. Grade C-.