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‘Firestarter’ is a sign that Zac Efron needs to contact his agent. immediately.

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During the first decade of the twenty-first century, horror lovers She was besieged by reruns that were neither wanted nor loved, including (but not limited to) 2003 Texas Chainsaw MassacreAnd 2005 the fog And Horror Amityville2006 black christmasAnd the hills Have EyesAnd wicker manAnd omen And When a stranger calls2008 prom night2009 Friday the 13thy And Stepfatherand 2010 A Nightmare on Elm Street. It was a bleak era of inferior business that put a glossy modern sheen on business that, with the rare exception (in particular, rob zombie two Halloween movies), it has been grabbed for cash that has tapped into familiar and easily marketable properties of a new generation of audiences of the sort longing for something sinister and sick to enjoy with their friends on a Friday night.

When this trend died, another led by Weird things and similar projects that unearthed the beloved gems of the ’70s and ’80s in order to honor nostalgia. It is up for debate whether these remix projects are more original than the remixes that preceded them, but in that context we now get fire startera new movie produced by Blumhouse Stephen King 1980 novel about a girl who has the power to set her mind on fire. It was always one of the author’s less early efforts, but it was thrust into the public consciousness primarily by director Mark L. Lister’s 1984 film adaptation, which starred Young Drew Barrymore—Renew her hack part Which. T. extra floorLike Charlie, the kinetic kid who struggles to come to terms with her unruly habit of lighting fires. Not that it deserves to be remembered; Despite impressive acting by George C. Scott, Martin Sheen, Louise Fletcher, Art Carney, David Keith and Heather Locklear, it was a poor movie that lacked horror, suspense, character, or interesting thinking in its infernal head.

All of which leads us to Keith Thomas’ 2022 iteration of King’s tale, a misguided undertaking that straddles the line between the shoddy rehashing of 20 years ago and the more recent acclaim of the past decade. premiering simultaneously in theaters and on Peacock today (May 13), fire starter Feels, right from the start, almost entirely DOA – a somewhat shocking turn of events considering that former director Keith Thomas stay up It was a restricted and effective slice of religious terror. Thomas’ talent for seriously understated work is once again evident in his most recent work. However, the only mood this fail evokes is lethargy, and the only response it evokes is confusion about why anyone – headlines included Zac Efron– They thought this was worth their time or energy in the first place.

In a public home in a featureless town in an undisclosed location, Andy (Efron) and Vicki (Sydney Lemon) live with their daughter Charlie (Ryan Keira Armstrong), who is nothing of normal, as evidenced by the opening dream sequence in which infant Charlie sets fire to the Her bed – then in her head! Andy awakens from this fantasy, and later finds his daughter playing with a Zippo lighter in the dark in their kitchen. She talks about “feeling weird in my body”, which means being able to shoot from her torso (also known as “the bad thing”). Andy reminds her that when this uncontrollable sensation washes over her, she should calm herself by focusing on everyday things in her field of vision. Once Vicki appears, he offers them to make all the pies, although since Efron can’t sell himself as a dad (even with a routine beard), this loving parenting gesture seems laughably unoriginal.

A credit sequence of adorable VHS videos shows that, as college students, Andy and Vicki were part of a science experiment involving a hallucinogenic chemical compound that gave them telepathic and telekinetic powers, both of which they later passed on to their blazing daughter. The LSD-is-bad scenario was a byproduct of the book’s exact time in 1980, and thus reverberates as completely out of place in the 2022 story. However, Thomas and his cohorts have stuck with it, describing it as the reason this clan is hidden from The Shop, the secretive organization responsible for their condition and eager to get them back for further lab study in mice.

Charlie learns about this case when she explodes in a rowdy manner at school (driven by bullies) and at home (injuring her mother), thus attracting the attention of store captain Hollister (Gloria Robin), who seeks advice from her predecessor, Dr. .Joseph Wanless (Courtwood Smith) and joins another enhanced test subject – Michael Gray’s John Rainbeard – to hunt down Charlie. It wasn’t long before Andy and Charlie fled the power grabs whose shadowy rumors were a relic of the 1970s. Sadly, their entire ordeal is an action-free, event-free business consisting of pit-only situations in an alley behind a building (where Charlie joyfully fried a cat to crunchy) and in the home of an old man (John Beasley) whose mind-controlled Andy helps them fly.

The LSD-is-bad script was a byproduct of the book’s exact time in 1980, and thus reverberates as completely out of place in the 2022 story.

To say that nothing happens in fire starter It is an understatement. Rarely has the film taken less narrative steps than this, all at the same time immersing itself in nothing but explanatory dialogue. Scott Tims’ script was so elaborate and lethargic that Thomas and his crew are powerless to inject any momentum or vitality into the proceedings. The few stabs of shock fear are pitifully ineffective; Scenes of death without blood and without imagination. And the effects of fire are annoying and disappointing. Pictures fly off the walls, Efron bleeds from his eyes (as a result of using his ‘push’ powers), and eventually Charlie hones her gift and control, but Tims’ scenario is a slow action that avoids quick thrust from the Kings. The novel, what is its main (only?) source.

worst, fire starter Boasts a synth score that sounds familiar from Horror legend John Carpenter That, when you marry late shots of Charlie riding a suburban bike in a hooded sweatshirt, transports things into regurgitation, as if the movie is now intentionally reluctant. Weird things‘knock-off take on fire starter And its supernatural/sci-fi paradigms from the 80’s. Closing shot, ending with Carpenter’s sub-band.Halloween The theme that runs on redline closing balances brazenly seeks to hit that sweet spot of nostalgia, but at this point in this unintentional renovation, the only thing one feels comfortable about is that it’s over.

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