Rent Doctor Sleep (2019)

3.7 of 5 from 78 ratings
2h 32min
Rent Doctor Sleep (aka Stephen King’s Doctor Sleep) Online DVD & Blu-ray Rental
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On highways across America, a tribe of people called The True Knot travel in search of sustenance. They look harmless-mostly old, lots of polyester, and married to their RV's. But as Dan Torrance (Ewan McGregor) knows, and tween Abra Stone (Kyliegh Curran) learns, The True Knot are quasi-immortal, living off the "steam" that children with the "shining" produce when they are slowly tortured to death. Haunted by the inhabitants of the Overlook Hotel where he spent one horrific childhood year, Dan has been drifting for decades, desperate to shed his father's legacy of despair, alcoholism, and violence.
Finally, he settles in a New Hampshire town, an AA community that sustains him, and a job at a nursing home where his remnant "shining" power provides the crucial final comfort to the dying. Aided by a prescient cat, he becomes "Doctor Sleep". Then Dan meets the evanescent Abra Stone, and it is her spectacular gift, the brightest shining ever seen, that reignites Dan's own demons and summons him to a battle for Abra's soul...
, , , , , , , , , , James Flanagan, , , , Dakota Hickman, , , , Sallye Hooks,
Stephen King, Mike Flanagan
Stephen King’s Doctor Sleep
Drama, Coming Soon, Horror, Sci-Fi & Fantasy, Thrillers
Release Date:
Run Time:
152 minutes
Release Date:
Run Time:
154 minutes
Release Date:
Run Time:
154 minutes

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Reviews (1) of Doctor Sleep

Just What The Doctor Ordered - Doctor Sleep review by Spoons

Spoiler Alert

Doctor Sleep reminded me of my cinema going days thirty years ago when big films were called "Event Movies" and that's exactly the feeling I got watching this. It is a fantastic companion to the brilliant The Shining which was indeed an event movie all those years ago. Ewan McGregor shines(pun intended) as the now adult Danny Torrance and the supporting cast are excellent. The recreation of The Overlook Hotel in the last quarter of the film is absolutely stunning. The movie warrants the long running time of 2hrs 30 mins but please make sure you see The Shining before you see this if you haven't already because otherwise Doctor Sleep won't really make any sense. Fantastic stuff.

2 out of 2 members found this review helpful.

Critic review

Doctor Sleep (aka Stephen King’s Doctor Sleep) review by Mark McPherson - Cinema Paradiso

In 2013, Stephen King returned to The Shining by writing Doctor Sleep. The story returned with more to delve into with the Shining powers, sure, but also brilliantly weaves in issues of addiction, fear of death, and fear of being reaped of value for your talent. Now, with a film adaptation by Mike Flanagan, we return to the movie version of Shining with all its familiar cues. Thankfully, this less of a reunion and more of a merging of Stephen King’s brilliance for fear and Kubrick’s stylish take albeit conflicting with King’s vision.

We catch up with Danny after the events of The Shining, now played by Ewan McGregor. Rather than hone his powers, he tries to not only conceal it but conceal the ghosts that haunt him. His drunk and violent lifestyle leads him to the tough choice of coming to a small town to reform himself. He has some help not merely from the kindly townsfolk, willing to give him a roof over his head and AA meetings to recover, but also from another person with strong Shining power. Miles away, the teen girl Abra (Kyliegh Curran) communicates with him telepathically as a sort of shining pen pal.

But the world contains a more real horror than the mere ghosts that once haunted Danny. Rose the Hate (Rebecca Ferguson) runs a traveling folk called True Knot, a collective that survives by feasting on the powers of the shining. They’ve somewhat found the answer to immortality, realizing that consuming the souls of the shining can make them live longer. They seek out others with the power and determine whether they take them into the fold or eat their soul. A homeless hustler girl with mind-control powers to make people sleep seems perfect for the group. A talented baseball-playing kid, however, serves more as a sacrifice. Naturally, it won’t be long before Rose and her group catches up with Abra and Danny, leading to a showdown.

While that description of the story may make it sound like some sort of AKIRA style battle of psychic powers, Doctor Sleep takes care never to let its new additions and theatrics overshadow the grander themes. There’s a number of real issues and allegories present. The most obvious is Danny’s addiction to alcohol that has tarnished his view of himself. The bigger picture of the story seems to take aim at the fear of both death and difference. It’s hard not to see the clear parallel to capitalism the way the True Knot both seek to corrupt power early and then feast off their own when their number is up. It’s for this reason why the villains are more terrified than our heroes in terms of who they are. True Knot fears death and is so desperate to find more power. Danny, however, works in a hospice and has come to terms with what it means to die, no longer fearing to face the ghosts of his past.

While the film does draw much from the previous film in terms of flashbacks and some visuals, as well as the somewhat expected return to the spooky mansion, Flanagan does a strong job trying to make his film distinct from Kubrick. It’s a tough act to follow but there’s a lot of brilliant visuals to expanding on the shining lore without falling back on the more familiar mysteries. I’ve also got to mention how refreshing it is to see a film with NEW actors playing familiar characters for flashback sequences rather than falling back on CGI. Major props to the casting of Carl Lumbly, Alex Essoe, and Henry Thomas doing an amazing job subtly replicating the likes of Scatman Crothers, Shelley Duvall, and Jack Nicholson respectively.

There are real moments of terror in this picture, from the eerie lingering of paranormal powers to the very gruesome torture scene of a boy. There are very intriguing character arcs the way Danny comes to terms with mortality and Abra comes to terms with not hiding her powers. All of this contributes to a film that serves less as Shining 2 and more as a sequel worth returning to after nearly forty years.

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