Adrian Martin



Last Concern

‘It’s over. You’re finished.’ And then, after a pause: ‘Goodbye’. These are the last five words uttered by Christopher Walken in the concluding scene of The Dead Zone (David Cronenberg, 1983). His character, Johnny Smith, has been tormented, up until this point, by an unusual gift that has made him the ostracised loner within his community: if he grips someone’s hand, he can foresee the moment of their death. If they take his advice, they can alter this destiny; but many, considering Johnny to be a nut or a freak, ignore it and suffer the consequence.

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