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Genre: Drama
Photography: Color
Running Time: 107 minutes
Country: United States
Release Date: November 30, 1990
Directed by: Rob Reiner
Written by: William Goldman
Distributed by: Columbia Pictures
Starring: Kathy Bates
James Caan
Richard Farnsworth
Frances Sternhagen
Lauren Bacall

Misery is the film based on a novel with the same name by Stephen King. It is a 1990 American psychological horror, suspense, thriller, drama film.  It was directed by Rob Reiner, written by William Goldman, musically composed by Marc Shaiman, filmed by Barry Sonnenfeld, edited by Robert Leighton, distributed by Columbia Pictures, produced by Castle Rock Entertainment, Nelson Entertainment, Rob Reiner, Steve Nicolaides, Jeffrey Stott, and Andrew Scheinman, and starred James Cann, Kathy Bates, Frances Sternhagen, Richard Farnsworth, and Lauren Bacall.  It's based on a novel of the same name by Stephen King.  


After a famous author is rescued from a car crash by a fan of his novels, he comes to realize that the care he is receiving is only the beginning of a nightmare of captivity and abuse.

Why It Rocks

  1. Due to being very loyal to its source material, fans often regard the film as one of the best Stephen King adaptions.
  2. The acting is just full-on amazing, especially from Kathy Bates as Annie Wilkes.
  3. Memorable quotes, such as Annie Wilkes' most famous line “I’m Your Number One Fan”.
  4. Interesting and relatable characters, such as Paul Sheldon.
  5. Annie Wilkes is a sophisticated and very cunning villain to watch.
  6. A numerous amount of unforgettable serious and intense scenes that’ll leave you biting your nails.
  7. The climax where Paul fights Annie to the death is both epic and emotional as the former is finally able to stand up for himself despite the odds against him due to the injuries sustained by the latter and with killing her, he ultimately survives the ordeal.
  8. Decent cinematography.
  9. ”He didn’t get out of the cockadoodie car!”


On Rotten Tomatoes, the film received an 89% rating; the consensus reads, "Elevated by standout performances from James Caan and Kathy Bates, this taut and frightening film is one of the best Stephen King adaptations to date."

Roger Ebert liked the film, stating, "It is a good story, a natural, and it grabs us."

The genre magazine Bloody Disgusting ranked Misery fourth place in its list of "10 Claustrophobic Horror Films".

King himself has stated that Misery is one of his top ten favorite film adaptations, in his collection "Stephen King Goes to the Movies". In his memoir called On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft, King references the movie adaptation of the book, saying:

Misery grossed $10,076,834 on its opening weekend, finishing at second at the box office behind Home Alone. It eventually finished with $61 million domestically.

Audiences polled by CinemaScore gave the film an average grade of "A-" on an A+ to F scale.

Annie Wilkes was ranked #17 on AFI's 100 Greatest Heroes and Villains list.


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