Children of the Corn (Donald P. Borchers, 2009, USA)

Children of the Corn (2009) is the third adaptation of Stephen King's 1977 short story, following 1983's short film Disciples of the Crow and Fritz Kiersch's 1984 film adaptation. The film was directed, written, and produced by Donald P. Borchers, the original producer of the 1984 version. Believing that version to be flawed, Borchers eyed adapting King's original story more faithfully. King even gets a co-writer credit on the screenplay, although it is clear that he was not involved here. Originally intended for theatrical release, the resulting film ultimately premiered in an edited version on the Syfy network. 

Children of the Corn is the most faithful version of King's story - large segments of dialogue are taken directly from the story. As with most King works, however, more faithful does not always mean better. In contrast to the rather normal relationship between Peter Horton and Linda Hamilton's couple in the original film, Borchers' couple is closer to the version in King's story - constantly bickering and almost on the verge of divorce. The problem is that the unpleasantness of this relationship is so over-the-top - particularly in the performance and dialogue of Candice Mcclure's character as Vicky - that we end up wishing for the couple's speedy demise. 


Another major issue with this version is that Isaac, the cult leader of the children, is a far cry from John Franklin in the original film. Unfortunately, Isaac here just looks like a little kid in a big hat, and he is about as intimidating as a puppy. In general, the kids in the original film were more menacing than here. When Burt kills them, it seems that we should sympathize with the kids because he has such a bigger advantage. From what we've heard, this film is a stronger entry than usual in this franchise.


4/10

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