Which edges out Maximum Overdrive for the craziest thing Stephen King has ever written.
So leave it to Hollywood to take the one happy ending the guy gives us and just s**t all over it. In Frank Darabont's film, the man and his son drive from the supermarket with three others, and it again appears that monsters have taken over the world. But there's no message of hope here: The world, for all intents and purposes, seems to be gone. Rather than wait to be killed by monsters, the main character uses his last four bullets on his son and the other passengers. He then uselessly turns the empty gun on himself before exiting the car to face his death. Within seconds, a tank approaches -- the military has the situation under control and has begun to clear the mist. Our hero just killed his friends and his family for nothing.
Jesus Christ. How do you get to that from "Hartford" and "hope"? Sure, Hartford is rough, but it's not "put a bullet in your son to spare him the horror" rough. Reviewers found the new ending "ghastly" and "nihilistic," or at least "out of character." And Stephen King isn't an automatic shill for his movies: He said he hated Stanley Kubrick's classic The Shining for its changes. King successfully sued when another film drifted too far from his short story. And though he loved his other collaborations with Darabont (The Shawshank Redemption and The Green Mile), he joked that the overly sentimental The Green Mile was "the first R-rated Hallmark Hall of Fame production."