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DREAMCATCHER

Four boys rescue a seemingly retarded child from bullies and the kid rewards the benevolent quartet with a supernatural gift--the ability to read minds. The gift, as it turns out, is a decidedly mixed blessing.

CAST: Morgan Freeman,Thomas Jane, Jason Lee, Damian Lewis, Timothy Olyphant, Tom Sizemore, Donnie Wahlberg
DIRECTOR: Lawrence Kasdan

"As directed by Lawrence Kasdan, ‘Dreamcatcher's’ science-fiction story of a group of childhood friends, now all grown up, in whose hands is placed the future of the planet is told with the same ungainly mixture of tones and sensibilities that characterizes King's books. ‘Dreamcatcher’ on both screen and page is all over the map, managing to be simultaneously jokey and scary, sentimental and ruthless, tediously everyday and grotesquely out of the ordinary…Given that King's gift is mixing the pedestrian with the terrifying, having the supernatural rub up against the everyday, maybe the film's dead zones, so to speak, are essential for the creation of the sense of the ordinary that's necessary for the film to be effective. If we weren't wincing, maybe we wouldn't be scared." --Kenneth Turan, The Los Angeles Times

"‘Dreamcatcher’ at least has a verve often missing from Kasdan’s work. It’s a bumpy thrill ride… It’s a voluminous mess, perhaps intentionally so—the filmmakers try to please everybody by throwing in ‘Big Chill’–style camaraderie, icky monster stuff, touchy-feely occultism, goofball farce, and military-combat explosions… It would take a filmmaker of truly astonishing versatility to harmonize all these disparate tones, and Kasdan, for all his free-wheeling swagger here, has a fairly conventional imagination. But there are moments in ‘Dreamcatcher’ when he gives you the giggles and the creeps at the same time, and that’s not easy to do." --Peter Rainer, New York

"I went into ‘Dreamcatcher’ hoping — somewhat perversely, given the state of the world outside — for a good scare and found myself before long howling with laughter. There is so much going on, and it is all so poorly integrated, that watching the movie from start to finish is like listening to Stephen King's Greatest Hits played by an earnest but talentless tribute band…Except for the stoical Mr. Jane, the four friends are twitchy and jokey in a way that's meant to be charming but that is sufficiently annoying to make you wonder which of their characters you hope to see killed off first. There are almost no women in the whole picture, which may be taken either as a sign of imaginative limitation on the part of Mr. Kasdan and Mr. King or as a testament to feminine good sense." --A. O. Scott, The New York Times

"‘Dreamcatcher’ is one of the more consistently entertaining Stephen King adaptations, a sprawling, big-budget epic that lurches from a creepy supernatural thriller to a campy, fart-joke-studded, aliens-on-the-loose extravaganza. Veteran writer-director Lawrence Kasdan-- better known for low-key humanist comedies like ‘The Big Chill’--gleefully returns to the pulp-movie roots of his youth, which included collaborating on the scripts for ‘Raiders of the Lost Ark’ and the first two ‘Star Wars’ movies… Kasdan obviously has his tongue firmly in his cheek, but he elicits excellent performances - and with cinematographer John Seale, he creates some truly arresting images, accompanied by James Newton Howard's
chilling score. ‘Dreamcatcher’ is a lark probably best enjoyed by 12-year-olds--or anyone still able to get in touch with their inner 12-year-old." --Lou Lumenick, The New York Post

"An isolated house. A snowbound countryside. Malevolence and violence. Telepathy. All of it taken from the pages of Stephen King. Have the elegant horrors of ‘The Shining’ returned to theaters everywhere? In your dreams! The new movie fitting that description is ‘Dreamcatcher,’ which stirs a similar batch of ingredients into a vastly less flavorful stew…
The men of ‘Dreamcatcher’ aren't fully rounded characters, they're glib compendiums of Generation X clichés, spouting dialogue that sounds like the product of a computer program, not a pair of skilled screenwriters like William Goldman and Lawrence Kasdan. The acting is equally shallow." --David Sterritt, The Christian Science Monitor

''‘Dreamcatcher’ is one of King's big fat geek settings, crammed with bits, fancies, and the author's copious pop-culture free associations…What fills some 600 King-size pages, though, is too much and too messy here: Kasdan can create scenes of banter and menace, of everyday Maine community and gut-gushing F/X, but he can't wrestle this production into a coherent movie experience. And what gets mangled most grievously is the astute insight into the pop-saturated psyches of American boys and men that, for all his romps with horror, is Stephen King's real writerly talent." --Lisa Schwarzbaum, Entertainment Weekly

" ‘Dreamcatcher’ is a spectacular mistake, a five-star screw-up that--notwithstanding sheer grossness, plot meanderings, inconsistency and illogic--has given me more fun than almost any other movie this year...I think you can say that almost everyone watching this will be spellbound, whether they're stupefied by its insanity, more conventionally compelled by the various horrors in store or a combination of both. Unfortunately, in this lackluster moviegoing season, that's almost a case for going." --Desson Howe, The Washington Post