I don't mean to freak people out, but has anybody seen The Dead Zone, David Cronenberg's awesome 1983 adaptation of Stephen King's equally wicked 1979 novel?
It's about a schoolteacher named Johnny Smith (played by Christopher Walken) who, after a terrible car crash, wakes up from a coma to realize that he can see people's futures when he makes physical contact with them. At one point he happens to shake hands with Gregg Stillson (Martin Sheen), a dangerous, fast-rising American politician whose angry rhetoric incites the working class to proclaim him as their saviour.
Last year, with the U.S. presidential campaign in full swing, King himself noted the similarities between the Stillson character and Donald Trump, who he referred to then as He Who Must Not Be Named. To his 2.7-million followers, King tweeted: “Populist demagogues like He Who Must Not Be Named aren’t a new thing; see THE DEAD ZONE, published 37 years ago.”
Now, I’ve seen the The Dead Zone a bunch of times. It’s one of my fave alltime King movies–right up there with Misery, Carrie, and The Shawshank Redemption–so I know how closely Sheen’s smarmy portrayal of the power-mad, fear-mongering Stillson resembles the orangey dude who, come tomorrow, gets the nuclear codes necessary to destroy the world many times over.
Way to scare the living shit out of everybody Steve-O!