THE DARK TOWER
FOR YEARS, STEPHEN King hasn’t been able to write a grocery list without Hollywood snaffling it up and turning it into a film. Yet The Dark Tower, an eight-volume epic that spans the author’s career, remained stubbornly out of reach, thought too intricate, too ambitious to adapt. Until, as they say, now. For here comes The Dark Tower, with Danish director Nikolaj Arcel at the helm. Inspired by, but not slavish to, the first instalment of the series, The Gunslinger, it follows Jake Chambers (Tom Taylor), a New York teen drawn into Mid-world, a dark version of our Earth. Once there, Jake finds himself amid a conflict between gunslinger Roland Deschain (Idris Elba) and Matthew Mcconaughey’s Man In Black. The driving force behind their enmity: the eponymous edifice that sits at the heart of all existence.
The Dark Tower promises to be many things — fantasy, Western, horror — but Elba has a comparison that, these days in particular, is specifically commercial. “For me, he’s a superhero,” he says of Roland. “Superheroes need to have character. That was really important to me in Roland. He’s a man of few words and few emotions.” There’s no doubt Roland has superheroic qualities (he never misses with his sandalwood six shooters, and looks awesome in a long cloak). And if the film connects, and leads to sequels and mooted interstitial TV series, Roland could soon be giving Tony Stark, Bruce Wayne et al a run for their money.