Four Stephen King Adaptations Worth Seeing

Stephen King always has been, and always will be, my favorite author of all time. He is a genius with an imagination that can compete with anyone and come out on top every time. Though I enjoy him to no end, I’ve never been a huge fan of movies based on his work. I read the books, I love them, and I know that no one can tell the story as brilliantly as he can. There have been a lot of adaptations between 1976 and 2012, but only a select few of them can be considered great.

4. The Green Mile (1999)

The Green Mile

The Green Mile is the story of a confused and misunderstood man unjustly condemned to death in the 1930s. It is a tragic tearjerker of a book, and it instantly became one of my favorites. While the movie failed to give the same emotional reactions, it was still a great success, thanks mostly to the amazing performances by Tom Hanks and Michael Clarke Duncan. Closer to the end of the book, John Coffey gave a speech right before he was put into the electric chair. It was one of the saddest moments in any book, and could bring tears to the eyes of the strongest men. A bit of it was cut from the movie, which was the biggest disappointment for me. Otherwise, The Green Mile is a wonderful adaptation of an already great story.

3. Pet Sematary (1989)

Pet Sematary

The book and movie alike offer a great mental dilemma: Do I bring my loved ones back from the dead, even if I must risk them returning as monsters? Louis Creed desperately wanted to see his deceased son again, even though he was warned that the boy would not be the same. This, too, is a sad story that transferred to the screen quite well. It offered quite a few truly terrifying moments: Rachel’s flashbacks of her dying sister, and baby Gage returning as a killer. The family cat, Church, as also frightening after his return. Fred Gwynne and Miko Hughes are the standouts in this one, and it is thanks to them that I can count it as a success.

2. Carrie (1976)


Carrie has never been one of my absolute favorite books, but I will admit that the movie was done extremely well. It is probably one of the best book adaptations I’ve seen to date. It did a great job of telling the story of Carrie, her mother, and her day-to-day struggles with being different. Director Brian de Palma didn’t change a lot, because he realized that the story was already told to perfection by Stephen King. He didn’t try to out-do him; he didn’t try to make it better. He was only trying to tell the story to a different audience, and I respect him for that. Also, the title character was brought to life by the phenomenal performance of Sissy Spacek. The only difference I noticed, personally, between the book and the movie, was a very small one that did not hurt the success of the movie at all.

1. It (1990)


It is my favorite book of all time, hands down. It hits a lot of different heartstrings in many different ways. It tells the story of a great friendship which is brought together for the sole purpose of destroying an evil force. The depth of that friendship is so overwhelmingly beautiful that it can make one re-think their own personal friendships. Once the evil was destroyed, so was that friendship, because its job had been done. Never before, and never again, has a story (in book form, movie form, or any other kind of form) broken my heart as much as this. I felt like I had lost my best friend as well, many times over. Not only does it tell the story of a beautiful friendship, but it also tells a tale of an evil sewer-dwelling creature that takes the form of a clown in order to lure children into its lair. Coulrophobia (fear of clowns) runs rampant throughout the world, and I know that I was scared to death of sewers and shower drains (and, of course, clowns) for a good three years. Though the movie doesn’t grasp the closeness and beauty of that friendship as well as the book, it still does a great job at tugging heartstrings and scaring the pants off of people. This movie also has to thank its wonderful actors for its success: John Ritter, Richard Thomas, Harry Anderson, Tim Reid, and of course, the terrifying Tim Curry as Pennywise. I wouldn’t call it the best adaptation, but since it is my favorite book and it features one of my favorite types of horror villains, it is definitely my favorite.

What do you think? Leave a comment.

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  1. Great idea for an article but I was left wanting more. There are many Stephen King movies that could have made this list, Shawshank Redemption, Stand By Me, The Shining… It would have been better if you wrote a lengthier article with more of this masterpieces. Or if you were to exclude any, then let us now why. Enjoyed it though!

  2. JenniferWard

    There are some that I have yet to see, because I haven’t read the books or stories for them yet (like Shawshank Redemption, which I know is a sin). I’ve never been a fan of The Shining, because I absolutely love the book and the movie doesn’t do it justice at all. So, really, this is just a working list. There is certainly a possibility for expansion, as I read and watch more, though.

    Thanks for the input!

  3. AnnaLar

    My favourite (mostly for nostalgia reasons) is Creepshow. One of the first comics that I owned.

  4. JenniferWard

    I love Creepshow! The only reason I didn’t include it is because I haven’t been able to get my hands on the comics.

    • Starcreeper

      I own those comics too, very good, particularly the artwork. Go and hunt them down!

  5. Ben Harper

    Pet Sematary has always been a personal fav. Solid genre film-making and some moments that still freak me out to this day. Nice article!

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