'The Dark Tower' Promo Highlights the Film's Connection to Past Stephen King Stories

Wednesday, 26 July 2017 - 7:28PM
Wednesday, 26 July 2017 - 7:28PM
'The Dark Tower' Promo Highlights the Film's Connection to Past Stephen King Stories
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Columbia Pictures
The marketing for The Dark Tower has been unusual to say the least: for one thing, it seems to have taken a long time to get going, especially considering that the movie comes out in less than a month, and we only got the first trailer back in May.

What's more, the movie's been portrayed mostly as a science fiction cowboy film, which, in fairness, it probably is, but without much mention of the classic horror that runs through this, and pretty much every other Stephen King novel. It almost seems as if Sony Pictures is eager to hide the fact that this is a scary movie in favor of promoting it as a rip-roaring, swashbuckling action adventure flick. All the shots of Idris Elba being a super cool cowboy do a good job of hiding the scarier bits courtesy of Matthew McConaughey. 

Now, though, someone at the movie's marketing team has clearly decided that enough is enough. When you're dealing with a famous name like Stephen King, it doesn't help to hide your movie's connection to the wider body of cinematic work that has come from his stories - especially when The Dark Tower series did exactly that with his other books. As such, we get a creepy new teaser video that points out that the guy who created this story also did The Shining, It, Carrie and many more:

It's a real shame we're not getting more of these horror connections - or Shawshank Redemption connections - in trailers, not least because it'd be a good time to capitalize on the popularity of It, with a remake currently also heading to movie theaters in the near future. With all its dimension-hopping, The Dark Tower would be the perfect way to connect together all of these classic films into a single cohesive shared universe. As is the trend now in movies, but which Stephen King himself has been doing in his novels for years.

The problem is, now that we've been teased with this little video (which shows off absolutely no footage from The Dark Tower) it's impossible to know whether the movie is going to be a horror film with Wild West influences, or a straight cowboy affair. Either this movie is being deliberately misrepresented in its trailers, or in this Stephen King namedrop video, and it's hard to tell which side of the marketing is lying to us.

Or, maybe, The Dark Tower will perfectly straddle the line between action and horror, seamlessly transitioning from its bleak alternate dimension of monsters and demons, to busy city streets as the Gunslinger wards off the Man in Black in the most badass way possible. With a marketing campaign this patchy, though, it's probably best not to give the film the benefit of the doubt.

It looks spectacular, but it's hard, at this point, to know whether it'll be classic Stephen King horror, or something more akin to the big-budget action films that fill up every summer movie season.

The Dark Tower comes out August 4, 2017.
Science Fiction
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