Misery [VHS] 
Sick of his 19th Century romantic heroine, Misery Chastain, novelist Paul Sheldon (James Caan) kills her off and writes a more personal, modern novel. When his car crashes in remote mountains he is saved by 'number one fan' Annie Wilkes (Kathy Bates), who adores Misery and has even named her pig after her. As she nurses him back to health at her remote dwelling, he realises she is not just going to let him go...
Based on the chilling bestseller by Stephen King, Misery was brought to the screen by director Rob Reiner as one of the most effective thrillers of the 1990s. From a brilliant adaptation by screenwriter William Goldman, Reiner turned King's cautionary tale of fame and idolatry into a mainstream masterpiece of escalating suspense, translating King's own experience with obsessive fans into a frightening tale of entrapment and psychotic behavior. Kathy Bates deservedly won an Academy Award for her performance as Annie Wilkes, an unbalanced devotee of romance novels written by Paul Sheldon (James Caan), whose books provide Annie with a much-needed escape from her pathetic life and her secret, violent past. After Annie rescues the injured Sheldon from a car accident, she seizes the opportunity to nurse her favorite writer back to health, but her tender loving care soon turns to terrorism as she demands that Sheldon write his latest novel according to her wish-fulfillment fantasies. From this point forward, Misery percolates to a boil as equal parts mystery, thriller, and cleverly dark comedy, with the helpless author pitched in deadly warfare against his number one fan. While Bates carefully modulates her role from doting kindness to sympathetic loneliness and finally to horrifying ferocity, Caan is equally superb as the celebrated author who must literally write for his life. It's essentially a two-actor film, but Richard Farnsworth and Lauren Bacall are excellent in supporting roles as they investigate the writer's mysterious disappearance. Frightening, funny, and totally irresistible, Misery was such a hit that some of Bates's dialogue entered the popular lexicon (particularly her nagging reference to Caan as "Mister Man"), and its nail-biting thrills remain timelessly intense. --Jeff Shannon --This text refers to the DVD edition.
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Many Stephen King stories have been adapted for the small and silver screen over the years with varying degrees of success. This film, from the moment it begins to the moment the end titles roll, hardly puts a foot wrong - even a hobbled one (see the film).
The cast is probably one of the most perfect ever assembled as they all fit their roles so well. James Caan is Paul Sheldon, a disenchanted romantic novelist who wishes to leave behind "Misery Chastain" (the popular heroine he has created) and turn his hand to more serious novels. Has anyone else in cinematic history acted out excruciating pain as realistically as James Caan does in this picture? Kathy Bates is utterly brilliant as Sheldon's deranged super fan, Annie Wilkes - Bates skilfully manipulates the audience into being scared of and hating Annie one minute to feeling slightly sorry for her in the next. Richard "Diamond" Farnsworth and Frances Sternhagen portray the lovable, kind-hearted, but playfully bickering small town Sheriff and his affection starved wife. Lauren Bacall manages to make her mark in a small, but significant role as Sheldon's literary agent.
Film ratio is 1.85:1. Audio is 5.1. Both are very good.
The extras included commentaries, documentaries, photo gallery and trailers.
Whether you're a Stephen King fan or not you should see this excellent film
The film depicts the story of novelist Paul Sheldon who when completing a book always stays at a lonely mountain retreat to put the final polish on his works. After completing his latest offering he begins the long journey back to New York but is caught in a blizzard and is injured in a car crash. Rescuing him from the freezing snowdrift is Nurse Annie Wilkes, a solitary soul who lives alone on her farm. She takes him in and proceeds to begin healing his shattered legs and broken arm.
At first Annie seems kind and well meaning if a little spooky. She learns that Paul is the writer of the famous series of “Misery” books and proclaims that she is Paul’s “number one fan”. One day she hurries back from the store delighted at having found the latest Misery offering. He delight soon turns to dismay as she reads that Paul has killed off her heroine in the book and in a frightening turn of personality starts to show how on the edge she really is.
With a minimalist cast of about half a dozen the film is tense, tight and claustrophobic. James Caan is wonderfully understated as the novelist Sheldon and is quite happy to let Kathy Bates (Wilkes) take centre stage. She plays the part brilliantly never going for the easy option of over-playing the role with unnecessary capering or psychotic overacting, somehow there’s always a part of you who sympathises with this sad and lonely creature.
I must also mention Richard Farnsworth as Sheriff Buster McCain, a classic King character if there ever was one.
My only gripe with the film adaptation is that the book contains a brilliant “tales of the unexpected”-like twist in the tale that they missed out of the film. Apart from that it’s a fine piece of nerve wracking horror.
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