The live action adaption to Stephen King’s epic The Dark Tower series is just days away from its cinematic release and, regardless of the negative reviews, it still has people talking. The Dark Tower anthology originates as far back as 1982 when the first in a long line of books set the wheels in motion for what is considered to be an emphatic and intricate fantasy adventure. Not only that, the lucrative franchise of novels contain a substantial number of cross-over characters and referencing to several other editions of Kings work, including; Salem’s Lot, The Shining, The Mist and IT. A SKEU (Stephen King Extended Universe), if you will.
Although, in light of the negative responses to the movie, a number of hardcore fans have pried themselves from the woodwork to dust off their cowboy hats and jump to its defence. It begs the ultimate question, how much do we really know about The Dark Tower? And with that, I present to thee, everything you need to know before you park your butt in that theatre seat.
The movie follows the last ever Gunslinger, Roland Deschain (Idris Elba), who is trapped in an eternal battle with the nefarious Walter O’Dim (Matthew McConaughey), also known as the Man in Black, who is hell bent on destroying the Dark Tower. The Tower is the key to holding the universe together and, aside from having extremely dull first names, the pair will embark on the ultimate battle between good and evil. I’ve had a few Friday nights like that, I must say.
Where is it Set?
The Dark Tower is set in a hyper-reality called Mid-World which runs parallel with the modern world. Mid-World adapts a number of qualities akin to the Old West, which would explain the Gunslinger and his pretty cool outfit, but will still maintain aspects of a supernatural realm.
A number of directors have taken interest in the project over the years such as JJ Abrams and Ron Howard, however, the task falls upon Nikolaj Arcel. You’d be forgiven if you have never heard of him before. He co-wrote the screenplay and directed A Royal Affair which was nominated for a bunch of awards in 2012 including an Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film. It wasn’t that great but it did put Alecia Vikander on the map. So, I guess that’s something to be thankful for.
What is The Dark Tower rated?
The movie is rated a PG-13, that’s a 12A to the Brits and an M for the Aussies. That means it’s going to be low-level violence with killing but no gore. Great, if you want to take the kids to it but not so much if you’re expecting something dark. Chances are that Sony wanted to make a franchise out of this series so they’ve toned down the violence to cater to a larger audience. Smart or very silly? You decide.
I think we’ve mentioned him before… Roland Deschain is the last of his kind. A post-apocalyptic knight and the titular hero of the first novel. His one and only mission is to pursue the Man in Black and stop him from destroying life as we know it.
The Man in Black
Walter O’Dim, apart from being dressed like a night club owner, is a demonic Sorcerer who serves the Crimson King, a powerful force who is obsessed with the destruction of the Dark Tower. It is unclear as to whether the Crimson King will make an appearance in this movie or it is more suggestive but he most certainly will be a likely addition for future instalments.
Jake (Tom Taylor) is the boy from the modern world who finds himself lost in Mid-World. It is from there, he must accompany the Gunslinger, mainly to stay safe but ultimately just to give the big guy a companion. Jokes aside, Jake is an integral character in the books so we expect to see a lot more of him in any future productions.
The Dark Tower Series
Before The Dark Tower has even hit cinemas, Sony have announced that they are looking to begin production on a series to continue the franchise. Idris Elba has expressed interest in reprising his role as the Gunslinger with the former executive producer of The Walking Dead, Glen Mazarra, developing the show.
There you have it, guys. You should be ready, locked and loaded to face The Dark Tower and Matthew McConaughey’s low buttoned shirt. Keep an eye out for our review and be sure to let us know what you thought of the movie in the comments section or on Facebook.