Home Entertainment Friday Fright Club: The Mist

Friday Fright Club: The Mist

2 min read

I’m a big fan of Stephen King, but more often than not the film adaptations of his novels leave a lot to be desired…except when Frank Darabont is at the helm. Our favourite Hawaiian t-shirt wearing director has adapted a string of Stephen King novels and novellas, more often than not resulting in something quite incredible. Don’t believe me? Well, I believe The Shawshank Redemption and The Green Mile disagrees with you. If you are aware of how terrible the second season of The Walking Dead was, as opposed to its first season, you’ll clearly see the power of Mr. Darabont.


Today I’m going to be discussing one of my favourite horror films…one that could really easily have fallen into mediocracy under the guidance of a different director – Stephen King’s The Mist, where the monsters are not nearly as terrifying as the humans…and the monsters are pretty damn horrifying.

Set in a small town in Maine, a mysterious mist starts rolling out of the hills from the direction of a military base, completely engulfing the town and its surroundings. People were naturally unnerved at first, but when the town sirens start wailing and panicked people come running out of the mist screaming about monsters, the mood soon changes to sheer terror.

The film follows a group of people that attempt to barricade themselves inside a convenience store, which is also where most of the film takes place. While horrors and death reign outside the windows, The Mist becomes a study in fear as the terrified people in the convenience store soon start suffering from cabin fever and start turning on each other, especially after the constant preaching of a religious fanatic, played to perfection by Marcia Gay Harden.The rest of cast, then unknown, include a big chunk of the cast of The Walking Dead and also stars Thomas “The Punisher” Jane in the lead as a father who gets trapped in the store with his asthmatic son.

Whenever I watch the film, I enjoy speculating as to the nature of the mist. It is often alluded in the film that the origin of the mist is from a science experiment gone wrong in a top secret military base in the hills – with a little stretch of imagination, you can almost imagine Black Mesa sitting somewhere in the distance. Nerd alert! The nature of the creatures also have a Lovecraftian allure, with each being more terrifying than the rest. The visual effects studio that created the creatures was reportedly recommended to Darabont by Guillermo Del Toro, who used the same studio for the effects in Pan’s Labyrinth.

I can’t recommend The Mist enough – but be prepared with something a bit more light to follow it up with, as it will undoubtedly get under your skin and give you the chills. It is a benchmark for other similar horror films and very few can compare. If you’ve seen it, let me know what you think!


Last Updated: May 24, 2013


  1. Couldn’t agree more! Love this movie. And that ending! O_o

    Also, if you’re a Dark Tower fan, watch closely at Thomas Jane’s painting in the beginning 🙂


    • Kervyn Cloete

      May 24, 2013 at 20:58

      I’ve seen the movie a couple of times, and yet that ending never fails to punch me in the gut.


  2. Rince an repeat

    May 24, 2013 at 12:23

    You know, I was put off King because I watched a few of his other movies so coming into this one I was like, okay, it may suck. And it didn’t, at all! Very very good movie.


  3. WernerE

    May 24, 2013 at 12:28

    I loved the continuous tension between the characters in this film, especially in the supermarket. And the religious fanatic, wow, I really hated that character. Well played, Marcia.


  4. Lee Fountain

    May 24, 2013 at 12:41

    Has anyone read the book? Cant seem to find it anywhere!!! Would love to know the prequel, i know normally the books go into much more detail!


    • Andre116

      May 24, 2013 at 13:07

      It is one of his short stories. I can’t remember in which book though. It had a terrible ending that gave absolutely no closure. I’m not going to spoil it, in case you do want to read it yourself and be dissapointed.


    • James Francis

      May 24, 2013 at 17:53

      It appeared in Skeleton Crew.


  5. Andre116

    May 24, 2013 at 13:09

    I loved the story when I read the book. I brought Doom, set on earth, to mind. With the assumed experiment gone wrong unleasing monsters from another realm.

    Also loved the film. It’s ending left a bit to be desired, but it is still miles above what the book delivered.

    I would love seeing this becoming a mini series.


  6. Justin Hess

    May 24, 2013 at 15:13

    Fantastic film. Pretty obviously an analogy for post-911 America but the metaphor doesn’t hurt the film at all.

    Like all great horrors (Alien being a great example) it’s as much about the characters dealing with their situation as it is the monsters.


  7. James Francis

    May 24, 2013 at 17:52

    Great choice. Skeleton Crew was the first King book I read and The Mist captured me immediately. The movie did a fantastic job bringing it to life.


  8. Kervyn Cloete

    May 24, 2013 at 20:57

    Like a lot of King’s work, this actually ties in directly to The Dark Tower. The creatures come from that military base, where the description of the portal they came through matches up with the “thinny” that Roland and co discover in one pass, The creatures themselves, specifically the flyers, are also creatures that Roland encounters.


    • Andre116

      May 25, 2013 at 07:37

      I used to read a lot of Kings work, but slowly moved over to the poor man’s Stephen King, Dean Koonz. Found his writing to be more accessible and fun. Have not read a book in years though. Never tried Dark Towers though. I think there is a comic on the books as well. Maybe I should look out for that.


      • Kervyn Cloete

        May 25, 2013 at 13:27

        I’d say read the books before hitting the comics. The comics are good, but you’ll be missing out a lot of the subtext. The comics are mainly there to just expand on events that are just mentioned in the books.


  9. dave.

    November 22, 2013 at 08:04

    This film gave me the creeps like few films ever have. It kind of left me with a knot in the pit of my stomach. Not only were the monsters horrifying but the way the people began treating one another was even more horrific. This film made me think about how ancient cultures used to sacrifice humans in order to quell the anger of certain gods. It showed how when mankind is made to feel absolutely powerless, vulnerable and afraid, that what we will do in order to survive, could be unimaginably cruel.
    The idea was, that the military had been conducting experiments(Project Arrowhead) with opening portals into other dimensions or possibly other planets. The tornado that ripped through the area near the beginning of the movie hit the military base and caused the dimensional window to be torn wider than it was supposed to ever be and allowed the mist as well as the creatures who lived in it, into our realm. It’s possible that by having a freak tornado cause the portal to be torn open, it was to convey that it really could have been God warning mankind not to mess with such things.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Check Also

Bryan Fuller writing/directing a new adaptation of Stephen King’s Christine

Hannibal creator Bryan Fuller is tackling a brand new feature film adaptation of Stephen K…