DREAMCATCHER, based on a Stephen King novel and directed by Lawrence Kasdan (THE
BIG CHILL), is about ten times scarier than its intriguing trailer might lead
you to believe. A blend of ALIENS, OUTBREAK and DUNE, it is a thriller, a
horror movie and a comedy that will have you jumping high and laughing loud.
But its convoluted, complicated and confusing story would be infinitely better
with a full half hour and several characters chopped out of it.
The movie opens with four troubled guys in their late twenties, Dr. Henry Devlin
(Thomas Jane), Joe 'Beaver' Clarendon (Jason Lee), Gary 'Jonesy' Jones (Damian
Lewis) and Pete Moore (Timothy Olyphant), dealing with their gift. These
lifelong buddies were given the ability to read minds and more by a mentally
challenged guy named Douglas 'Duddits' Cavell (Donnie Wahlberg) when they were
young. Now they use their magic to do such mundane things as finding the lost
car keys of a real estate agent that one of them wants to date. But their
talents will soon be put to the test.
Meanwhile back in the snow-covered woods where the guys are going for their
annual outing, trouble is brewing. The mad Colonel Abraham Kurtz (Morgan
Freeman), ably assisted by his sane Captain Owen Underhill (Tom Sizemore), is
dealing with a disaster that will soon run smack into our brain-reading boys,
and the results won't be pretty. Expect to be grossed out, amused, scared,
fascinated and, yes, sometimes bored. The movie's best moments are its most
over the top. Beaver, for example, has a toothpick fetish that leads to a scene
that will have you and the rest of the audience thinking or saying loudly,
"Noooooooooo, don't do that!" You may never be able to look at a toothpick
again without thinking of that scene.
DREAMCATCHER runs way too long at 2:14. It is rated R for "violence, gore and
language" and would be acceptable for teenagers with strong stomachs.
Copyright © 2003 Steve Rhodes