Sunday, September 20, 2009

The Stand - The Stand

This is the fourth and final half of my ‘Stand Posts.’

The Plague can be read here.

The Dreams can be read here.

The Betrayal can be read here.

And now the exciting conclusion to The Stand! In this act, most everything is tied up in the end and it follows our four friends as they venture to Las Vegas to confront and destroy Randall Flagg while Flagg struggles to find all the moles that Mother Abigail sent to spy on him. This act also has some of the most powerful moments in the entire miniseries and is probably one of the more inspirational acts of the entire show. There are so many things that I love about this act that it is hard for me to convey through writing… but here I go.


There are a number of scenes in here that I love but one of my favorite scenes of all time, that has stuck with me all these years, would be the quarry scene. Why? Because in the beginning, the group playfully runs down the slop as though they were kids, laughing and having fun before they meet their demise. It’s so entertaining to see these men having fun after all these years and it provokes the inner kid in all of us. Also, when Stu breaks his leg and is unable to go on, the compassion and the fear that the rest of the characters have feels so real and it’s so emotional to see them leave him behind and carry on. It’s truly a memorable moment.

Another thing that I really enjoyed, and kind of ironic since I am an atheist, is the biblical references and allusions to biblical stories. Specifically, Stu and Fannie representing Adam and Eve of the new world, and how God nearly destroyed have of the world to make way for a pure society of good. In the end, when Stu falls the three men are on their own is a lot like the 3 disciples and Stu and Fannie’s baby is like the reincarnation of baby Christ in the new world.

I also really enjoyed the sequence that showed the four men walking across vast terrains because it really show’s the hero’s journey and what they must overcome and accomplish. It also shows the determination and persistence they strive for and it’s sort of inspirational in a way to see them continue walking. Much like what is said in the movie, they are sent out into the world only with the clothes on their backs so that they can be born again and become one with nature. It’s poetic.

Something that has always been on my mind and one of the more controversial parts of the movie, I think, is the development of the Trashcan Man. In the beginning we are assuming that he is offering his life for Randall Flagg and he even tells him that he is his servant but in the end, when he blows up his plane hanger and steals a nuke to send to Las Vegas… I can’t help but wonder if he was really working for God all this time. I question whether or not he really meant that he is was willing to give up his life for God and in the ending, it’s almost like he is welcoming the hand of God to take him. It is an interesting question.

Another thing that I really liked about, and it is a little trivial, is how funny Randall Flagg can be. Out of nowhere he would begin dancing or dropping puns... I mean, he seems like the kind of person that we all are inside... just some guy out to have fun with the expense of human life. It's really quite interesting to see his character shift from good to bad. 

Also, the ending when it showed a montage of all the characters that passed away, was one of the most heartbreaking memorials I have ever seen in a horror/drama. It really makes you shed a tear for what they did so that good could prevail. 

Last but not least, the soundtrack. This has got to be one of the best things about this whole series. It’s a mix between southern instrumental rock, country and folk… which is only fair considering the way this story pans out is very similar to that of some old folk song legends. The way the music just ads to the loneliness, desperate and inspiration tone to the movie gives me shivers every time I think of it. Even, when the music gets southern rockish… I feel as though I am in a western, which this show often resembles at times. 


Overall, this is one of the best Stephen King adaptations that I have ever seen and it really is one of the more emotional and hard-hitting stories. This is truly an epic masterpiece and for a TV show it really goes in depth with everything. It’s really tragic and it follows the hero and villain mythologies really well and compared to the Dark Tower series, it’s one of the more realistic epics.

As a kid, this show blew me away and it made me tear up several times and when I saw the ending all I can do is stare at the credits in awe… wondering what I saw and how to respond to it. Even now, as I look back on this show I still can feel the same way as I did back then and I still can feel all those emotions and wonder what happened. For me, this is perhaps my favorite Stephen Kind adaptation and I still cannot voice my opinion of this film on just four posts but I tried. I hope you guys enjoyed it. 


The Horror Press said...

What year did it come out? Ive been wanting to see it but I want to read the book first lol

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