The Dead Zone
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Christopher Walken plays a schoolteacher, Johnny Smith, who awakens from a five-year coma. He discovers that he has acquired the ability to foretell a person's future simply by touching his or her hand. After seeing several examples, Smith's doctor (Herbert Lom) becomes convinced that Smith can not only predict the future, but also has the power to change it. This ability is given its severest test when Smith shakes the hand of ruthless political candidate Greg Stillson (Martin Sheen) -- and suddenly has a flash-forward to a nuclear holocaust. The Dead Zone is not only one of the… More

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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 90%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"An accomplished psychological thriller."
‑ Variety Staff, Variety
"The Dead Zone does what only a good supernatural thriller can do: It makes us forget it is supernatural."
‑ Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times
"[An] engrossing yet strangely unembellished adaptation of Stephen King's bestseller by director David Cronenberg."
‑ Alan Jones, Radio Times
"Arguably the best adaptation of a Stephen King novel."
‑ , TV Guide's Movie Guide
"A thing of dark, twisted, ironic beauty."
‑ Scott Weinberg,
"By no means a bad film, just a disappointingly bland and superficial one."
‑ Dave Kehr, Chicago Reader
"Mr. Cronenberg's direction is vivid and effective; his pacing is a little unemphatic at times, but the film's individual scenes are very well staged."
‑ Janet Maslin, New York Times
"Director David Cronenberg's sense of pace is acute, the editing by Ronald Sanders is seamless and suspenseful. And, if nothing else, the movie establishes that chills can be generated without explicit gore and violence."
‑ Ralph Novak, People Magazine
"Cronenberg attempting a little mainstream with this Stephen King yarn and really pulling it off."
‑ Kim Newman, Empire Magazine
"Don't let the fact that visible breath and frosty misery take priority over exploding heads and fetus-licking snow you."
‑ Eric Henderson, Slant Magazine
"Cronenberg pulls it off, but you can't help feeling it's a movie in search of a TV series."
‑ Tom Charity, Time Out
"The Dead Zone ultimately ranks as one of the best King adaptations to date."
‑ Rob Vaux,
"It's both moving and quietly unsettling as it builds towards a forceful climax."
‑ , Total Film
"This is a welcome straightforward adaptation/improvement of King's original, minus Cronenberg's visceral flourishes."
‑ , Film4
"Cronenberg tells the story with measured strokes and a sure emotional touch as well as nifty blasts of horror."
‑ Jeffrey M. Anderson, Combustible Celluloid
More reviews for The Dead Zone on Rotten Tomatoes

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