The Dark Tower (2017), Dir. Nikolaj Arcel

The Dark Tower (2017), Dir. Nikolaj Arcel
You can’t stop what’s coming. Death always wins.
— Man in Black, The Dark Tower (2017)

Stars: Idris Elba, Matthew McConaughey, Tom Taylor, Katheryn Winnick, Claudia Kim, Fran Kranz, Katheryn Winnick, Jackie Earle Haley, Dennis Haysbert.
Director: Nikolaj Arcel
Screenplay: Nikolaj Arcel, Jeff Pinkner, Akiva Goldsman, & Anders Thomas Jensen.

I have felt like I have seen this film before. Before being every other mediocre YA, unoriginal, poorly crafted, imaginative bore that only cash-cow Hollywood bothers to piece together. It takes anything that is remotely interesting about its premise, characters, and world building and boils it down to the thinnest eye clawing crime of nature. People should be arrested for making such disappointing drivel. 

Tom Taylor (playing Jake Chambers) though is a damn cute kid and quite a good performer. Same goes for Claudia Kim (playing Arra Champignon) and of course Idris Elba (playing The Gunslinger). The middle section with The Gunslinger and Jake is pretty entertaining once they meet Arra and make their way to New York City. Idris really seems to be enjoying this fish out of water character and there are a couple of lines that really made me chuckle.

But the movie around them is such a predictable bore and that saddens me. From the first shot the trajectory of the film is all too confirmed to be terrible. There is no subtlety, no questioning, no mood, or cinematic magic– it just is a flat piece of bland shot after bland shot. If their editing team tried just a little harder it could have salvaged the tiny possibility of making a half watchable kids movie.


★ 1/2