Doctor Sleep (Movie Review)

Title: Doctor Sleep (2019)

Director: Mike Flanagan

Screenplay Writer: Mike Flanagan

Novel By: Stephen King

Stars: Ewan McGregor, Rebecca Ferguson, Kyliegh Curran

Genre(s): Drama | Fantasy | Horror

Runtime: 2 hours 32 minutes | Rating: R


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 RVs. But as Dan Torrance knows, and tween Abra Stone 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… Written by Stephen King

Now let’s talk about the movie… That’s why we are here, right?

Writing/Story: ★★★  |  Cinematography:  ★★★★  |  Character(s)/Acting: ★★★★

Writing/Story: ★★★


Ok, for the most part, I really enjoyed this movie. FOR THE MOST PART. Now, if you’ve been reading my blog for a while, you know that Stephen King is my favorite author. However, I have not yet read Doctor Sleep, so I can’t say how well the movie follows the book.

With that said, I will just speak to the movie on its own.

The scene where ‘baseball boy’ is killed… NO, JUST NO!!! There was no need for the director to show that scene in such detail. It was horrific. It was grotesque. It was over the top and made me sick to my stomach. To be honest, I almost turned the movie off I was so disgusted by the fact that the director would show the scene in that way when he clearly had other options.

Cinematography ★★★★

The cinematography was good. There were a number of really cool shots, interesting angles, and zoom features that made caught my eyes. Very artistic in ways that I didn’t expect.

Character(s)/Acting: ★★★★

I felt like Ewan McGregor did a great job as Danny. I’ve always enjoyed him as an actor and thought he was perfectly cast for this role.

Rebecca Ferguson was creepy and ethereal all at the same time. Right from her first scene you feel drawn to her character, but yet there is a tugging feeling that screams DANGER – DANGER – DANGER in your mind.

A huge shout out to Jacob Tremblay who played Bradley Trevor (baseball boy). Although it was my least favorite scene in the whole movie (not because of the acting but because of the act), Jacob gave a fantastic performance. No child should ever experience what his character went through and personally, I believe, not child actor should ever have to experience it either. It was violent in a way that should never have been scene, but he did a wonderful job and get a truly spectacular performance.


* Danny Lloyd, who played the character Danny Torrance in The Shining, makes a cameo in this movie at the baseball game and is listed in the credits as “Spectator.”
* Most elements from The Shining (1980) were recreated with duplicate sets and lookalike actors, though three shots were reused: the aerial shot of the water and the island and the two shots after it of the car driving on the mountain road. The shots were degrained, recolored as day-for-night, and had snow digitally added.
* Mike Flanagan painstakingly recreated the sets of the Overlook hotel from blueprints acquired from Stanley Kubrick's estate.


“Our beliefs don’t make us better people. Our actions make us better people.” ~ Danny Torrance

“We’re all dying. The world’s just one big hospice with fresh air.” ~ Danny Torrance


Would I watch it again? Probably not. Will I read the book? Absolutely.

Have you seen Doctor Sleep yet? If so, let me know your thoughts in the comments below. If not, I highly recommend seeing it for yourself and forming your own opinion.

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