You know I've always wondered what goes on inside the head of Stephen King. Does he dream the stories he writes, is he inspired by the world around him, or does he just get so fucking hammered that he lets his hand do all the work so by the time he comes to he has an entire book finished which is pretty obvious with today's topic "Cujo".
Written in 1983 Cujo tells the story of a mother and her son who become trapped on an isolated farm while being terrorized by a rabid Saint Bernard. I remember reading the book sometime ago and by the end of it my feelings were mixed. On one hand I thought it was a great psychological thriller with some great suspense. But on the other there were a few problems with it the most glaring being the side plots that take up a majority of the story and act a pretty much filler before the dog starts chowing down on folks. I guess that's to be expected when its own writer doesn't even recall writing it.
Later maybe a month or so after reading it I decided to look at the film adaptation from 1983 starring Dee Wallace and was directed by Lewis Teague who directed Alligator and would later go on to direct Cat's Eye in 1985. Overall I thought it was a pretty damn good movie. Don't get me wrong now its nowhere near perfect and it does have it fair share of problems but it tries to do right it does right.
The starts off strong with a cool title which is a swirling crimson mist and haunting foreboding music playing in the background pretty much telling us what we are in for. In the first 10-15 minutes the film quickly establishes who the characters are and the danger that lies ahead of them. The side plots like the affair and the cereal incident are still in the story but they are not dragged out like they are in the novel as they are quickly explained and their impact on the plot is made clear without dilly-dallying. That's one of the strengths of this movie it paces itself well and keeps everything flowing.
|I WILL LICK THE GRAVY OFF YOUR CAR!!!!|
The scenes with Cujo vary from being suspenseful to plain silly in my opinion I guess it comes with the territory of having your titular villain being a Saint Bernard. According to what I was able to find out about the film a number scenes had Cujo being played by a Rottweiler because the Saint Bernard they had playing him wouldn't stop wagging his tail. A number of scenes seem like he just wants to play rather than wanting to tear your balls off.
If I was to recommend the film or the book usually in most cases I would suggest you read the book but this time around I'd say check out the movie instead just because its just better paced then the novel plus it actually a fun film to sit through too so check it out when you have the chance!