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Overall Rating

Awesome: 20.37%
Worth A Look25.93%
Average: 11.11%
Pretty Bad: 20.37%
Total Crap: 22.22%

1 review, 48 user ratings

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Langoliers, The
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by Rob Gonsalves

"Bronson Pinchot is a god."
2 stars

Stephen King's novella 'The Langoliers' (in his collection 'Four Past Midnight') seemed like perfect fodder for a brisk two-hour feature. Unfortunately, writer-director Tom Holland (who later made the brutally bad King adaptation 'Thinner') served it to us as a two-night miniseries.

The plot, a cheerfully nonsensical Twilight Zone-ish concept, finds a group of eight passengers aboard an L.A.-Boston flight wondering what happened to all the other passengers and to the world below. As it turns out, the Langoliers ate them. If you say so, Steve.

Some of King's stories, like this one and Christine, make better movies on the page than on the screen. What can be funky and hyperbolic in your mind's eye can come off ludicrous when fleshed out literally in front of the unforgiving camera (which is why Stanley Kubrick was wise to jettison the killer shrubs in The Shining, and why King was an idiot to put them back in for the TV version). Here, despite the best efforts of an FX team led by Tom Barham and Image Design, the titular critters look like what they are computer-generated Pac-Men with teeth.

The performances range from lame (Kate Maberly as a blind psychic, Patricia Wettig as a woman feeling maternal stirrings, Christopher Collet as a music student, the usually dependable Dean Stockwell as a pompous mystery writer) to good (David Morse as a pilot, Mark Lindsay Chapman as an assassin, Baxter Harris as a perpetually hungry passenger, Frankie Faison as the movie's token minority) to great.

The great performance belongs to Bronson Pinchot as an unhinged yuppie. Pinchot, to my eyes, has never been less than dazzling he even made eight years of that moronic sitcom he was on worth catching. Why isn't he getting work these days? 'Tis a mystery. But in The Langoliers, Pinchot throws himself into this yuppie dickwad just as energetically as he gives himself to comedy. It's a beautifully sustained piece of rabid acting. When his character stiffs, though, so does the movie, which ends on a dippy "We're all alive! Let's giggle!" note that had me yearning for Pinchot to resurface with his knife and kill them all.

The miniseries got great ratings despite lukewarm reviews and poor first-night word-of-mouth ("Uh, is something interesting going to happen tomorrow night?"), probably riding on the coattails of the previous year's 'The Stand' miniseries.

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originally posted: 03/18/07 12:03:00
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User Comments

1/16/14 Carole dardin Loved it!!! 5 stars
6/23/13 David A. If anyone tried to pull my nose like that, I would gouge out their eyes! 3 stars
12/16/11 Dr.Lao Dang, that was silly 2 stars
10/25/11 uoy was i the only one that liked it? it freaked me out and had good moments of freakiness. 5 stars
8/28/11 scissors this film is actually a bit too smart for most people. it's a completely unique take on... 5 stars
6/14/11 thsai It sucks so much it's good.Saw itin 95, maybe my standards were lower then. 5 stars
9/23/10 Gary Saw this in 1995.Was stoned and the scrubbing bubbles got me me 4 stars
9/03/10 C256 Terrible acting and junk dialogue. 1 stars
6/19/10 MerrieMelodie Pinchot made it watchable, then he got eaten by cocoa puffs. 3 stars
6/13/10 Rich A mixed bag, great concept poorly executed. Mostly so bad it's good type of fun. 3 stars
6/01/10 Craig Acting and script mostly lame but concept of the past as waiting to be devoured ws great 2 stars
12/10/09 THE KING nigga fuck u 3 stars
10/18/09 EyeCandy Hated it!!! 1 stars
1/11/09 CL Probably the worst movie I've ever seen...I was just glad for it to be over! 1 stars
10/31/08 Orion C What a terrible movie. The actors are trying hard, but, sadly, the plot makes NO SENSE. 1 stars
4/05/08 Pamela White twilight zone type good 4 stars
9/28/07 summer9 Not a great movie but for sci fi fans fairly entertaining and worth a look. 4 stars
3/29/07 carlene Not one of King's better ones 2 stars
3/24/07 Mark Mackey I rather enjoyed this movie. Scary and suspenseful. One of the best Stephen adaptions 5 stars
3/24/07 Carniv4 Laughably awful garbage. 1 stars
3/19/07 Shobert Everything Stephen King writes is shit. 1 stars
12/02/06 David Pollastrini very faithful adaptation 5 stars
10/31/06 jism great film, have seen 4 times, will again! 5 stars
6/16/04 franknutz most accurate addaptation of a book to screen ever very good. 5 stars
2/24/04 Dr.Lecter Even worse-acted than the Star Wars prequels, and dull 1 stars
1/26/04 Eric It was great. Then pak man showed up then it went to hell 3 stars
1/03/04 J It was ok but its kind of cool! *** 4 stars
11/06/03 American Slasher Goddess Not extremely predictable, has involving characters, but a little cheesy. 4 stars
10/16/03 Tom Looks student film, but gripping and well executed. 4 stars
10/10/03 Erik Van Sant Somebody shit the bed of the universe with this one. God-awful. 1 stars
9/22/03 Darryl First half is intriguing enough, but goes downhill fast towards the end. 3 stars
7/04/03 Dave Hopman Why do a lot of people always say Stephen King movies suck. This is ANOTHER good one! 4 stars
10/20/02 Charles Tatum Pretty good until goofball finale 4 stars
9/17/02 UmanBeing Saw it on cable last night. Thought it was intruigueing, not scarey, but my lump formed. 4 stars
9/02/02 y2mckay decent Stephen King story turned into a stupid miniseries. Dean Stockwell annoying as fuck 1 stars
3/31/02 Brian Jacobson Very eerie. 4 stars
3/14/02 Al bad dialogue, but good plot and story 4 stars
2/09/02 Eric Does look a bit made-TV at times, but it's very engrossing and suspenseful. 4 stars
9/22/01 Tim Excellent Movie 5 stars
6/23/01 JON ill deficate on this film then re watch it 1 stars
5/27/01 Gail facinating 4 stars
4/25/01 Spetters CRAP!! the acting and effects sucked big time 1 stars
4/01/01 Jesse L Stephen King at his worst. Ugh Ugh Boring Stupid Ugh 1 stars
3/30/01 MovieMan This movie is stupid It is the most depressing movie I have ever watched. 2 stars
2/04/01 Del R Great stuff, didn't like the Pac-man style langoliers though 4 stars
1/22/01 scorekeeper You'll scamper back for more. 5 stars
4/11/00 lucas jackson This was good until those fucking computer animated langolers showed up 2 stars
2/06/00 Kyle Broflovski As far as King's TV-miniseries-adaptations go, this is much better and truer than "It". 5 stars
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  14-May-1995 (PG-13)



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