LATEST | FEATURES | INTERVIEWS | NEWS | FRIGHTFEST | REVIEWS Who's There? Stephen King's The Tommyknockers Comes To Horror Channel
By James Whittington, Saturday 1st May 2010
Originally written in 1987, The Tommyknockers was Stephen King’s first real mixing of the horror and science fiction genres. Considering this followed the gritty realism of Misery, The Tommyknockers is a bit of a romp with an easy to digest premise that encroaches on a primal fear, that of not knowing who to trust. The book is set in Maine (where else?) where a long buried UFO is disturbed and emits a gas that infects the population of a local village. They are slowly transformed into creatures similar to those that had lived inside the spacecraft. Unfortunately those creatures had nasty habits and soon the townsfolk are killing each other.
Widely known as a subtle allegory of a period of Stephen King’s life (he was dabbling in substance abuse during the creation of the piece) The Tommyknockers transferred to the small screen in 1993 and like other King adaptations such as Salem’s Lot and It, this mini-series stays true to the source text whilst also injecting some of its own ideas.
To play the leads actors Jimmy Smits and Marg Helgenberger were chosen, a pair who were already established in shows such as L.A. Law and China Beach and brought with them a sense of credibility to the fantastical plot. The supporting cast was constructed from an eclectic mix of actors such as Robert Carradine, Traci Lords, E.G. Marshall and Cliff DeYoung. Mini-series stalwart John Power was given the job of directing whilst Lawrence D. Cohen, the guy who successfully transferred Carrie to the big screen way back in 1976 was put on script duties.
The serial wastes no time introducing us to the people of this small town where almost everyone has a juicy secret. There’s a postman (DeYoung) making “special deliveries”, a cop (Joanna Cassidy) with a crush and a poet (Smits) battling alcoholism and a lack of a new material. One local, Bobbi Anderson (Helgenberger) uncovers an alien craft and soon all hell breaks loose. Innocents start displaying incredible technical skills, building bizarre machines that can do anything, such as telepathic typewriters and others that can track missing persons. All the time whispers of The Tommyknockers begin to circulate and then death comes to the town…
Shot in a very cinematic fashion with subtle use of special effects to forward the narrative, The Tommyknockers is science fiction horror at its most intelligent. The cast play it perfectly straight with Smits in particular adding much pathos and depth to his far from perfect character. The build up to the alien presence and possession of people is measured, with director John Power making sure every ounce of tension can be wrung for the ever increasing extra terrestrial threat.
Fans of Stephen King won’t be disappointed with this interpretation of one of his most famous books. For those of you new to his work, tune in and watch a masterful, chilling and rewarding piece of television.
Stephen King’s The Tommyknockers starts on Friday May 7th at 16:00.
MORE FEATURES 13 nights of scares as Horror Channel presents a Haunted Halloween Season
Posted on Tuesday 8th October 2019
For thirteen nights, from Saturday 19th October to Thursday 31st October at 9pm, Horror Channel presents a Haunted Halloween Season, a supernaturally spooky selection of the scariest movies, including the UK premiere of the ghostly chiller The Unspoken and the channel premiere of the terrifying thriller Pay The Ghost, starring Nicholas Cage.
Other highlights include Damiano Damiani's diabolical prequel to The Amityville Horror - Amityville II: The Possession. James Watkins' spine-chilling remake The Woman In Black, starring Daniel Radcliffe, Ti West's The Shining slacker-style indie sensation, The Innkeepers. the 2008 US remake of The Eye, starring Jessica Alba and box-offi...SHARE: READ MORE "We are all aliens until we get to know one another". Space 1999 lands on Horror
Posted on Thursday 3rd October 2019
Imagine it is the 1970s, the space race has been won and news of trips to the moon are fading from public interest. But you want to see more than just people playing golf and taking rock samples there. You want to see the human race make a base there, to use it as a launch pad to help reach further into space and maybe one day we could populate it.
Step forward Gerry and Sylvia Anderson who in 1975 gave the world one of the finest and most adventurous Sci-Fi TV series ever made, Space 1999.
The premise is straight forward and smart: It is the (then) future and a base has been built and manned on the moon. Tragedy strikes on September 13th 1999 when an nuclear explosion causes th...SHARE: READ MORE Horror Channel is delivering the UK TV premiere of Patient Zero this October
Posted on Tuesday 24th September 2019
Horror Channel has five UK TV premieres in October, including pandemic action thriller Patient Zero (Saturday 12th), which stars Matt Smith, Natalie Dormer, Stanley Tucci and Agyness Deyn. Humanity is battling intelligent, adrenaline-fueled creatures born from a viral super-strain. After being bitten, human survivor Morgan (Matt Smith) realises he is asymptomatic and can communicate with the infected, leading the last survivors on a hunt for Patient Zero and a cure.
There are also UK premieres for Lake Placid: The Final Chapter (October 4th) and Lake Placid: Legacy (October 11th) - two of the popular series of monster crocodile horror/comedy films created by David E. Kelley. Plus, gho...SHARE: READ MORE Star Trek: Voyager - A journey beyond
Posted on Friday 30th August 2019
Created by Rick Berman, Michael Piller, and Jeri Taylor, Star Trek: Voyager introduced the world to the fourth Star Trek crew whose venture into space was a twist on what had gone before. Here the jeopardy was ramped up as Captain Kathryn Janeway (Kate Mulgrew) and her team become stranded far from home. This led to plenty of conflict between them all but also built relationships that wouldn't have normally occurred.
Voyager had more of a classic Star Trek feel and retained a classic Star Trek trope, that of having an array of characters who reflected a wide diversity of races and cultures. This led to plenty of clashes between the members as they strive to return home.
...SHARE: READ MORE The Devil's Candy gets its long-awaited UK TV premiere on Horror Channel
Posted on Wednesday 28th August 2019
Horror Channel has seven prime-time premieres in September, including the UK TV premiere of Sean Byrne's The Devil's Candy, an absorbing, unnerving and devastating ride into psychological trauma, starring Ethan Embry.
There are also channel premieres for David Chirchirillo's deadly dating thriller Bad Match, Chad Archibald's Bite, a fearless fusion of slime, shivers and shock, box-office supernatural horror hit The Pact, and Mick Garris's macabre tale of horror and eroticism, Sleepwalkers, starring Ron Perlman and John Landis. Then there's the original sly monster croc comedy Lake Placid starring Bridget Fonda and Bill Pullman, and psychic debunking chiller Red Lights, st...SHARE: READ MORE Horror Channel Manager Stewart Bridle rounds up some of the genre gems to catch at FrightFest 2019.
Posted on Monday 19th August 2019
It's the most terrifying time of year, one filled with fear, torture and overwhelming dread. I'm not talking about being strapped to some SAW-type trap but rather having to decide watch to watch from FrightFest's annual line-up. And in their 20th year things are even harder than before with a record-breaking 78 movies to choose from. But if making a decision is slowly killing you then let us help with some of the movies we recommend scaring yourself with...CRAWL Alexander Aja, the director behind such horror hits as Switchblade Romance, the 2006 version of The Hills Have Eyes and Piranha 3D, returns with another gory genre piece that will do for the reputation of alligators what he previously did for... SHARE: READ MORE The Ford brothers chat about The Dead 2: India and Offensive which are both showing in our FrightFest Season.
Posted on Wednesday 14th August 2019
Ahead of the UK TV premieres of The Dead 2 and Offensive, (part of the FrightFest season), brothers Howard and Jon Ford discuss the trials and tribulations of filmmaking, healing wounds and why The Dead 3 won't be happening any time soon...
HC: We will be launching our massive 13-night FrightFest Double-Bill Season with the UK TV premiere of The Dead 2. Excited?
HF: Well it's a surprise, but a lovely one! Until I was asked to do this interview, I had no clue The Dead 2 had even been picked up by Horror Channel! But yes, I'm very excited.
JF: I hope the viewers enjoy the film. We went through much pain and effort to make this film, in tough parts of India. We were on a very m...SHARE: READ MORE Horror Channel celebrates FrightFest 2019 with bumper season
Posted on Tuesday 23rd July 2019
To celebrate FrightFest 2019, taking place in London during the August Bank Holiday, Horror Channel is dedicating thirteen nights to past festival hits. Amongst the twenty-six fearsome favourites, the channel will kick off the season with the UK TV premiere of Howard J. Ford and Jonathan Ford's India-based zombie road movie The Dead 2, the follow-up to their hugely popular African zombie adventure The Dead. There is also a UK TV premiere for Jonathan Ford's Offensive. Produced by brother Howard, this is a dark, violent tale of generational rage and revenge set in rural France.
There are also channel premieres for Julian Gilbey's harrowing British survival shocker, A Lonel...SHARE: READ MORE UK premieres provide summer chills on Horror Channel in July
Posted on Wednesday 19th June 2019 Saturday nights on Horror Channel in July sees the UK TV premieres of Casey La Scala's disaster shocker The Remaining, based on the Book of Revelations; Mark Young's contagious chiller Feral; Robbie Pickering's comedy horror Freaks of Nature and Nils Taylor's fearsome female thriller Quarries.
In the UK TV premiere of The Remaining on the 6th, a group of close friends gathers for a wedding, but the celebration is shattered by a series of cataclysmic events and enemies foretold by apocalyptic biblical prophecies. The survivors face a horrifying, uncertain future as they scramble for safety, but as their world collapses around them in chaos and terror, will they choose real life through faith, or just t...SHARE: READ MORE Killer Thriller season sends shock waves through June on Horror Channel
Posted on Tuesday 21st May 2019
Summer kicks off on Horror Channel in suspenseful style with Killer Thriller Season - a selection of tense shockers including the channel premieres of Rod Lurie's 2011 pulsating remake of Straw Dogs, starring James Marsden and Kate Bosworth; the murder motel chiller Vacancy, starring Kate Beckinsale and Luke Wilson; and the 2009 remake of kin killer slasher The Stepfather.
The Saturday night primetime season also features psychological thriller House at the End of the Street, starring Jennifer Lawrence, and Neil LaBute's horrifying racial drama Lakeview Terrace, starring Samuel L. Jackson and Patrick Wilson.
Here's more info on these killer movies...
David and Amy...SHARE: READ MORE Horror will be at MCM Comic Con London 2019, and you could be too!
Posted on Friday 17th May 2019
Horror will be at MCM Comic Con London 2019 and you've got the chance to be there too. More details on our Competitions Page.SHARE: READ MORE Interview with Horror's Channel Manager Stewart Bridle
Posted on Friday 10th May 2019 Stewart Bridle is Horror Channel's longest serving Channel Manager. He has guided Horror for almost a decade and has managed to bring to our screens many classics as well as introducing us to some new horror movie talent. In this, our 15th anniversary month we chat to Stewart about his role and some of the juicy pieces he has lined up for the rest of 2019.
HC: Have you always been a horror movie fan?
SB: Yes! I've always been interested and fascinated with horror and all genre stuff. I have an older brother who would manage to rent or get bootleg VHS of some great horror titles and I have memories of watching things like the original Dawn Of The Dead or slashers like The Burning while far too youn...SHARE: READ MORE Features Archive: 2019 | 2018 | 2017 | 2016 | 2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009 | 2008 | 2007 PICK OF THE WEEK
Thursday 17th October
Friday 25th October
Friday 25th October