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Thinner
1996 - R - Mins.
Director: Tom Holland
Producer: Richard P. Rubinstein, Mitchell Galin
Written By: Stephen King
Starring: Robert John Burke, Joe Mantegna, Kari Wuhrer, Stephen King
Review by: John Ulmer
   
"Stephen King's Thinner" is about an obese man who starts to lose weight at the rate of three pounds a day. He loses so much weight, in fact, that he starts to become too thin. "I'm being erased!" he yells, saying it just right so that they can slap it on the trailer for the film (which I would not be surprised to find that they did).

The fat man is played by Robert John Burke, who looks painfully funny in his fat suit and painfully unfunny as a sickened thin man. When the movie opens, we meet Burke's character, who is a waddling hot-shot lawyer. After winning a legal case for a friend, he goes out and eats. He always eats. Perhaps that is why he weighs over 300 pounds.

One night after eating at a fancy restaurant, he hits a gypsy woman running across a street in the opposite direction of a pharmacy (run by none other than Stephen King himself). She is hit by the car, goes flying into the air, and dies. Since our fat buddy has friends in the way of the law, he gets off easy. But the gypsy's father (Michael Constantine) takes justice into his own matters, by putting a gypsy curse on the man who killed his daughter. "Thinner," he whispers, running the back of his hand along the man's cheek.

The next day, the strangest thing has happened. Fatso has lost three pounds--and this rate continues for quite a while, until he finally decides to find the gypsy man and command him to take the curse off. Otherwise, he will be "erased" from existence and he might never be able to eat again!

There's an amusing character on television by the name of Jiminy Glick, played by Martin Short. Jiminy Glick is basically Martin covered in a fat suit. He then interviews celebrities in a humorous manner and stuffs his face with donuts--even if he's choking he's still eating. It's sad to think that the makeup in "Thinner" are less impressive than a television show. Martin Short looks like a fat man on "Primetime Glick." Robert John Burke looks like he's trying to be funny. The fat on his cheeks are so obviously fake, while his stomach is nothing but, methinks, some stuffed pillows and bedsheets. It looks as if they weren't quite done working on him when filming started--when he walks, you can practically see the ragged edges of the cushions sticking out from his extra-large clothing. And when he talks and smiles...let's just say the rubber on his face doesn't exactly hold together.

But that doesn't matter, because I had fun watching "Thinner." There are some much better horror films out there to be had, for sure, but this movie, though ludicrously low-budget, is fun to watch, and it does keep your interest for the most part. It gets a bit strange towards the end, but the very final climax of the movie left me a bit startled and a bit surprised. It wasn't expected. "Thinner" is just like all the other Stephen King horror adaptations out there. But there's some fun to be had in this one.
 
Movie Guru Rating
Average but solid.  Fans of this genre will probably enjoy it.  Others may not. Average but solid.  Fans of this genre will probably enjoy it.  Others may not. Average but solid.  Fans of this genre will probably enjoy it.  Others may not.
  3 out of 5 stars

 
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