[Review] The Dark Tower

Dark Tower has already been in the cinemas for a while now, and some of you may have already seen it. For those of you who haven’t, and are deciding whether or not to watch it, here’s our take on the movie.

The opening scene reveals Jake’s (Tom Taylor) recurring nightmare involving a tower and a strange prison-like structure for harvesting children’s minds. He then encounters Roland Deschain, aka the last Gunslinger (Idris Elba), who helps him escape from the clutches of the evil Man in Black (Matthew McConaughey), intent on capturing Jake for his mind.

While the movie is an adaptation of Stephen King’s series of the same name, you don’t have to know the source material in order to enjoy it. However, if you have read the 7-part series, you may be able to discern bits of the movie from all 7 books – and this a source of contention amongst King’s fans who argue that the crux of the story isn’t clear from the short amount of screentime it has.

Those of you who don’t want to read the entire Dark Tower series can probably enjoy this  condensed version of the title. Very condensed, at just 95 minutes. The up side is that the pace of the movie is quick, and action-packed. While it does focus on cat-and-mouse chases and gunslinger action, one has to admit that it neglects explaining the background of the story.

While the premise is a simple one, a few things don’t quite add up – which is probably the product of multiple reshoots that plagued the movie. Firstly, the Gunslinger is injured for 90% of the time we see him, but he still manages to save the day. Secondly, if the Man in Black is supposed to be an all-powerful, all-seeing ‘devil’, how can a kid like Jake escape his grasp so many times? And then there’s the convenient ending which, to some of us anyway, seem like a bit of a cop out.

In any case, it’s a movie to watch if you like watching Elba being a badass (because he won’t play James Bond anytime soon), and seeing McConaughey as a baddie. The action is decent, as is the SFX, and it’s got a short run time. Heck, even Stephen King himself approves of the movie.