The small town of Haven becomes a hot-bed of inventions all run by a strange green power device. The whole town is digging something up in the woods, and only an alcoholic poet can unfathom the secret of the tommyknockers.... more » Includes interactive menus, scene access, and trailer.
King has actually written a lot of Scifi over the years. This miniseries is quite entertaining. Read recently that the book is now getting the movie treatment.
Jefferson N. from BLAIRSVILLE, GA Reviewed on 10/13/2012...
In this tv miniseries, a woman finds a strange artifact in the woods behind her house. She finds that her intellect starts to grow and she gets wonderful ideas out of nowhere. She starts to unearth it with an old friend of hers and more bizarre things begin to happen in the town they live in. Something is buried in Haven...and wants out. Can it be stopped?
The Tommyknockers book was one of Stephen King's worst, in my opinion...and the miniseries here isn't much better. It's slow-moving in the beginning and the ending is just...stupid. If you're a fan of all of the Stephen King movies, I guess you'll just have to force yourself to sit through this alien schlock-fest. For anyone else, I highly recommend it if you have a bad case of insomnia.
2 of 2 member(s) found this review helpful.
Sarah F. (Ferdy63) from DALTON, GA Reviewed on 2/9/2008...
Made for TV movie of the Stephen King book. Pretty good adaptation of the story. It doesn't cut out any of the major parts of the story like a lot of the King movies do.
2 of 3 member(s) found this review helpful.
Alien Savants Run Amok!
Bruce Rux | Aurora, CO | 05/27/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)
"The book and the miniseries differ, but both are quite good. For the jaded veterans among you, it's essentially Five Million Years to Earth, served up a la King.Marg Helgenberger trips over an ancient flying saucer in the woods one day while walking her dog, and decides it might make a nice private playground centerpiece if dug out and spiffied-up a bit. She starts experiencing a creative psychic brain-boost during the lengthy process, which is shared by a few of the nearby townsfolk. Her old lover, Jimmy Smits, however, an alcoholic poet of some former reputation with a metal plate in his skull, is left cold by Marg's new pet project - the saucer gives him a headache, literally.Pretty soon, the nearby isolated small town begins splitting-up into two factions - those who are sympatico with the saucer's psychic space-vibes, and those who aren't. Those who are become inventive geniuses, and those who aren't start more and more looking like dinner. Only Jimmy Smits is sufficiently immune to the nasty thing to exercise his presence of mind, and somehow stop the saucer and its long-mummified occupants from revitalizing themselves off Marg and the other infected townsfolk.This is a very handsomely produced piece, and sufficiently close to Stephen King's original novel that the changes made in the script - which are only done to simplify (and under-grue) the action, and allow a little alien activity - are more welcome than not. The cast are all terrific, especially leads Helgenberger and Smits. Helgenberger's transformation due to her dangerous alien exposure is nicely counterpointed with Smits' alcoholism, the saucer's influence acting like a drug to those who respond to its emanations. The special effects are great, and the inclusion of the revitalized aliens on the saucer in the finale is a nice touch - they're pretty cool, really. The suspense works well. The only real flaw with this piece is a bit too much padding, but the same can be said of most of Stephen King's work in general, and certainly this production has less of it than the novel on which it is based."
WHO'S THAT KNOCKING IN THE WOODS
Michael Butts | Martinsburg, WV USA | 10/11/2005
(2 out of 5 stars)
"THE TOMMYKNOCKERS is one of the more unsuccessful of Stephen King adaptations to hit the screen. Originally a 1993 tv miniseries, the movie suffers from lackluster direction, mediocre performances and no sense of true suspense or horror. Typically set in a homey little New England town, the plot centers on the discovery of a mysterious object in the woods by a local writer (Marg Helgenberger) who along with her alcoholic poet boyfriend(a poorly cast Jimmy Smits) decides to keep it a secret until the whole thing is unearthed. Meanwhile, a ghostly green light emits from the object, causing the townspeople to go bonkers in one form or another, whether it be by inventing stupid gadgets or wandering around with glowing green eyes. At three hours, THE TOMMYKNOCKERS definitely overstays its welcome and that is one problem in watching a miniseries in one take; it can become redundant. Tighter direction and a more focused cast could have helped but aside from John Ashton, EG Marshall and Joanna Cassidy in supporting roles, most of the performances seem phone in, and Traci Lords is ridiculously hilarious as the postal slut. A real misfire."
This movie rocks!
Patti A. Denison | Southern Indiana | 02/19/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I can't believe people who said they did not like this movie or the book. As usual, the book is much better but the movie is great. I thoroughly enjoyed both. This movie has suspense, a sci fi theme, lots of intersting charactrers, and lots of detail. AND Jimmy Smits is soooooooo hot! Anyone who is a sci-fi fan or Stephen King fan will like this movie."
Not good...simple as that.
RMurray847 | Albuquerque, NM United States | 09/13/2005
(2 out of 5 stars)
"Another disappointing Stephen King miniseries. For some reason, lately I've been rewatching some of the older Stephen King miniseries that I hadn't seen since they originally aired. Maybe I thought they'd be better without all the commercials to drag them on and on.
The cream of the crop is THE STAND. The dregs is THE LANGOLIERS, with the worst special effects ever...Ed Wood would have been proud. TOMMYKNOCKERS falls somewhere between.
Basically it tells the story of how one lady (Marg Helgenberger) stumbles across a mysterious little object in the woods, and is compelled to unearth it. Turns out its some sort of alien craft with the power to exert its "will" on the people of the little Maine town nearby. These people undergo gradual (or not so gradual) personality changes which allows them to "suddenly" invent impossible machines, read each others minds, and also to gleefully kill anyone who seeks to thwart them.
That's all well and good. Sounds like it could be good, clean, gory fun. Certainly, the book it's based on was. I know that King himself is not terribly fond of the book, mostly because he wrote it during the height of his drug and alcohol additions...but it contained some of his most disturbing scenes too, and a believable, ultimately heartbreaking romance between the two leads. I have always liked it myself. (To me, King's nadir was THE DARK HALF.)
Back to the "movie." Jimmy Smits plays Helgenberger's boyfriend, a formerly successful poet now awash in alcoholism...but trying to climb out of his hole. He's immune to the power of The Tommyknockers because of a steel plate in his head, but goes along for the ride for much of the story because of the guilt he feels over his own behavior. Eventually, things get bad enough that he finally musters up the courage to take matters into his own hands...with rather serious consequences for himself.
But the story is told in a plodding manner. For every compelling scene (for example, early on Smits is at a reception where he's been drinking too much, and has a gloriously over-the-top embarrassing moment) there's two clunkers (Cliff De Young and Traci Lords as two postal employees undergoing some serious hanky-panky in the sorting room!!) Helgenberger and Smits are fine, as are Joanna Cassidy as the local sheriff and E.G. Marshall as a kindly curmudgeon.
But the lengthy novel has been condensed so awkwardly, and the subplot with DeYoung and Lords given FAR, FAR too much time on screen (De Young is one of the worst actors EVER to get more than one role) to keep make even the gamest performances worthwhile. I guess the producers were so tickled to have former porn star Lords on their set, they just couldn't help coming up with more ridiculous things for her to do. Also, we are forced to see how far Robert Carradine (so good as the "head nerd" in REVENGE OF THE NERDS all those years ago) has fallen...he turns in a perfectly dreadful performance.
The special effects and makeup are quite cheesy. But many things could have been forgiven had a decent adaptation been managed. But THE TOMMYKNOCKERS was doomed from the start with a pitiful script, not helped by uninspired direction. If you're a big fan of Smits, Cassidy or Helgenberger, I guess you might want to take a gander. If you're a fan of Stephen King or horror/sci-fi...stay away! "