Sunday, 18 March 2018

The Monkey's Paw (1988)

One of supernatural fictions most well known tales, W.W. Jacobs' 'The Monkey's Paw' has, since its original publication in 1902 in 'The Lady of the Barge', been parodied, pastiched and adapted many times in shows as diverse as The Simpsons, The Twilight Zone, Ripping Yarns, The X-Files, The Monkees and perhaps most recently Inside No. 9.  It's three wishes storyline and theme of being careful what you wish for has obvious and very enticing appeal for storytellers but has rarely been bettered in the telling than in Jacobs' story.

The version presented here is a fairly low key production from 1988 with a cast of little known actors of whom perhaps the most recognisable is Alex McAvoy who played the teacher in Pink Floyd's 'The Wall'.  It's a faithful adaptation with a nicely claustrophobic setting that despite its limited run time isn't afraid to strike a leisurely pace and allow the tension to build to its dread climax although it does perhaps miss the mark slightly in reproducing the horror of that moment in the original.

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