1 9 9 3 (USA)
2 x 90 minute episodes
This television miniseries was based on the 1987 novel of the same name by Stephen King. It was directed by John Power and adapted by Lawrence D Cohen.
Bobbi Anderson (Marg Helgenberger) and her boyfriend, Jim ‘Gard’ Gardner (Jimmy Smits) find a metallic object buried in the woods which turns out to be a spaceship which is millions of years old.
The object has a strange effect on the residents of the nearby town who become super intelligent with incredible bursts of creativity, creating all manner of strange (and potentially dangerous) inventions.
Disintegrator rays, magic machines that make objects and people disappear.
However, as the people become more obsessed with their inventions and retreat into their own paranoid worlds, they seem to be suffering from health problems – as if they are literally being drained of energy and life.
Gard, who has a metal plate in his head from an accident, seems immune to the effects and must somehow save the town.
The miniseries was split into two parts and the glacial pacing at times suggests there probably wasn’t enough story in the book for a miniseries adaptation. The “Maine” village was really in New Zealand.
The book was written while King was struggling with drink and drugs problems and is one of those stories that he claims he can’t even remember writing.
Jim ‘Gard’ Gardner
Roberta ‘Bobbi’ Anderson
Trooper Butch Duggan
Deputy Becka Paulson
Sheriff Ruth Merrill
Cliff De Young