1989 / Director. Mary Lambert.
I love Pet Sematary. It is a wonderful book and the film is a great adaptation. Funny enough of all the Stephen King films ever made, Pet Sematary is the first that comes to mind whenever his adaptations are mentioned. It's certainly not the best of them but it's one that resonated with me from a young age. It's a flawed movie, particularly the first act, but it's a classic horror nonetheless. A family move into a new home, which is located on a busy road. Trucks speed by leaving a wake of dead animals behind. A pet cemetery was created in the woods by local children many years ago and when this new family's cat is killed the father buries it on sacred ground, beyond the fringes of the pet sematary. The cat returns a different creature... vicious and aggressive. When the family's toddler son is hit by a truck the grief stricken father buries him also. He returns a nasty murderous zombie kid. What makes the movie good is the drama it carries over from the book. The grief and despair are laid bare and in true Stephen King style, the viewer is put through the ringer before all hell breaks loose. King wrote the screenplay himself and it is a little flimsy at times, but the final act is action-driven and the dialogue is minimal. A ridiculously good performance by child actor Miko Hughes as the infant devil-child makes it a truly scary and unnerving experience. The film doesn't quite reach the heartbreak and horror of the book but it comes close enough. There is no CGI and the practical FX (prosthetics, make up, lighting etc) are so good. I watch it often and each time it's like visiting a childhood friend. It came at a time when King's work was at its best and being young, impressionable and excitable... I lapped this fucker up! Still do.