- Amazon Prime Video
- HBO’s dark atmospheric hit “Sharp Objects” finished its run on Sunday and fans might be searching for something to scratch that same itch.
- Master of horror Stephen King has a recommendation: “Picnic at Hanging Rock,” a 6-episode TV series in a similar vein that is available to stream on Amazon Prime Video in the US.
- The Australian series features “Game of Thrones” and “The Tudors” star Natalie Dormer, and is described by King as spooky, atmospheric, and beautiful.
On Sunday, the 8-episode run of HBO’s “Sharp Objects” came to a conclusion with a stunning twist that, well, honestly lots of people saw coming.
But though “Sharp Objects” was a thriller, its draw was less about plot points and more about the haunting mood created by the superb acting of cast members like Amy Adams, the cinematography, the sets, and the Led Zeppelin needle drops.
A good nutshell review would be that “Sharp Objects” is spooky, atmospheric, and beautiful. And if you miss that already, horror author extraordinaire Stephen King has a TV show recommendation for you that you can stream right now if you have Amazon Prime.
“If you liked Sharp Objects, you’ll like Picnic at Hanging Rock even more,” King tweeted on Monday. “It’s spooky, atmospheric, beautiful. And Natalie Dormer is amazing as the malignant Mrs. Appleyard.”
If you liked SHARP OBJECTS, you'll like PICNIC AT HANGING ROCK even more. It's spooky, atmospheric, beautiful. And Natalie Dormer is amazing as the malignant Mrs. Appleyard.
— Stephen King (@StephenKing) August 28, 2018
The “Picnic at Hanging Rock” King is referring to is a 6-episode Australian miniseries, which debuted in May and is currently available in the US on Amazon Prime. The series is an adaptation of a cult classic Australian novel by Joan Lindsay published in 1967 (there was also a 1975 film).
In the series, Natalie Dormer (“Game of Thrones,” “The Tudors,” “The Hunger Games”) plays Hester Appleyard, an enigmatic widow who buys a mansion in rural Australia and creates a school for young women. Six years into her tenure as headmistress, her pupils go on a Valentine’s Day picnic to – you guessed it – Hanging Rock, a formation with mystical properties. That’s when things start to go awry, with three of Appleyard’s students and a governess vanishing into thin air.
We won’t spoil the rest, but like “Sharp Objects,” though “Picnic at Hanging Rock” is a thriller, the joy of watching it is more firmly rooted in the atmosphere it creates and the complex relationships between the characters. And the acting is top notch.