Most of Stephen King’s books do not adapt to the big screen because they are simply just too bizarre: One novel which did translate was Christine.
I think the reason the 1983 movie was successful in adaptation is because the plot is simple: Christine is a classic killer car (and I mean a literal “killer” car), which has a rather bad female countenance about her. When high school nerd Arnie Cunningham (Keith Gordon) buys the 1958 Plymouth Fury she is a rusted out piece of junk; but once he goes to work on the car, she metamorphoses into a real beauty. Arnie’s personality has a change of sorts also. The one time nerd turns into an arrogant little twit and blows off his one and only friend Dennis; and then his family.
Anybody that messes with Christine pays the ultimate price. When five bullies who had terrorized Arnie at school break into the garage where Christine is kept and trash her out with sledge hammers, the car (which has the ability to rebuild itself), goes on a revenge ride; but the jealous Plymouth doesn’t stop there. She wants to take out Dennis and Arnie’s girl also.
The John Carpenter film is a ton of fun, with great 50’s music, 50’s haircuts, and decent acting. (Check out Harry Dean Stanton playing the local detective.) In the spirit of Halloween I recommend that if you haven’t seen it, do so; if you have, see it again. (Check AMC for the next showing.)
My rating: 4 of 5 killer cars.