The Dark Tower

By Angie Raphael

2.5 stars 

I often complain about directors being self-indulgent with overly long films. But director/co-writer Nikolaj Arcel should probably have added 15 minutes to The Dark Tower's 95-minute running time to flesh out the story and further develop the villain's background. Based on the book series by Stephen King, The Dark Tower is about last gun slinger Roland Deschain (Idris Elba), who is trying to stop Walter “The Man in Black” O'Dim (Matthew McConaughey) from bringing down the Dark Tower, which holds the universe together. Jake Chambers (Tom Taylor) is the child from Earth with special prophet powers who may be the key to either stop or help Walter. Elba's magnetic charm hugely improves the film and Taylor is also decent in his first feature role. But McConaughey seems uncommitted and his character is one-dimensional, which is a shame because Walter could have been a much more exciting villain. The final act is also messy and rushed. The Dark Tower is full of references to King's work, which fans will delight in noticing, but they will likely be disappointed with this film adaptation.