Very few authors are as well known and well revered as Stephen King. The prolific master of horror fiction has published over 50 novels and over 200 short stores since the 1970s, many of them best-sellers. And many of those best-sellers and a heck of a lot of those short stories have also been adapted into movies.
In fact, if we’re being honest, many of Stephen King’s stories have been adapted into some of the best films of the last few decades. Horror classics like The Shining, Carrie, Misery, The Dead Zone, Creepshow, Pet Sematary, Christine and The Mist have earned their place near the top of many lists of the best horror movies ever made. And even adaptations of Stephen King’s less horrifying fiction, like The Shawshank Redemption, Stand By Me and The Green Mile, are celebrated dramas with multiple Academy Award nominations to their credit.
But while we’re being honest, a lot of Stephen King movies suck. Shoddy filmmaking, misguided adaptations don’t help, and neither does the fact that sometimes King’s stories are just plain bonkers to begin with. The much-anticipated adaptation of The Dark Tower is only the latest disappointment in a long line of Stephen King stinkers, and that’s why we are here today.
What follows is our list of the worst Stephen King movies… with a couple caveats. We’re only talking about theatrically released feature films (because the straight-to-video and tv adaptations had a hard enough time as it is), and we’re not going to include any sequels that Stephen King himself wasn’t directly involved in, because all those Children of the Corn follow-ups, for example, are their own, separate, awful things.
(We are also giving extra credit to the Stephen King films that are terrible but entertaining, because it doesn’t matter how much more misguided Dreamcatcher is than A Good Marriage, we’d rather watch Dreamcatcher every single time.)
Find out what made the list, and be sure to tell us what we got wrong.
The 13 Worst Stephen King Movies:
Top Photo: Columbia Pictures
William Bibbiani (everyone calls him ‘Bibbs’) is Crave’s film content editor and critic. You can hear him every week on Canceled Too Soon and watch him on the weekly YouTube series What the Flick. Follow his rantings on Twitter at @WilliamBibbiani.