Warning: Obviously MASSIVE SPOILERS for Doctor Sleep Follow! Read only after you've seen the movie!
Based on the novel by Stephen King, and functioning as a sequel to Stanley Kubrick's classic film, Warner Bros. new film Doctor Sleep has its fair share of horrific events. The film goes into dark territory beyond just the ghosts that haunted the Overlook from the original feature film (though they certainly get a fair share of screen time). The film is rife with all of the dark material that both King and Kubrick injected into their respective versions of The Shining - with themes ranging from addiction, madness, and some pretty disturbing moments. To that latter point: it should be no surprise that Doctor Sleep contains some gruesome deaths - though a few of them will probably shock longtime Stephen King and/or Shining fans.
Even fans of the original Doctor Sleep novel will likely be surprised by some of the characters that bite the dust in the latest feature from director Mike Flanagan. Let's recap them below!
The first death in the film isn't entirely seen on screen, but we see a young girl named Violet (played by Violet McGraw, who previously appeared in Flanagan's The Haunting of Hill House) who is targeted by the True Knot because of her Shining abilities.
In the film Danny has a one night stand with a woman named Deenie, and discovers her toddler son before leaving the next morning. Later on, after recovering from his alcoholism and starting to use his powers once again, Danny has a vision where a deceased Deenie and her son call out to him, implying they died sometime after he left.
Danny gets the name Doctor Sleep by using his powers at a nursing home where he helps the elderly pass on peacefully, like falling asleep.
Danny reveals in the film that his mother, Wendy Torrance (played in the film by Alex Essoe as she channels Shelley Duvall), died from cancer with his powers foretelling her death as black flies crawl across her face.
The brief appearance of Jacob Tremblay (who appeared in Flanagan's Before I Wake) is quickly mired in tragedy as the True Knot kidnap and murder him for his steam. The aftermath of the carnage pictured above.
The psychic vampires at the center of the film die in a few different ways. Carel Struycken's Grampa Flick dies from starvation with other members perishing by gunfire from Danny and his friend Billy.
Danny's friend in the film takes his own life, but not of his own choosing. While dying from his gunshot, Snakebite Andi uses her own Shining powers (literally powers of suggestion), to make him kill himself.
Though not seen on screen, Abra's father dies by the hand of Crow Daddy who stabs him before kidnapping Abra.
In one of the most thrilling scenes of the film, Danny uses his Shining abilities to take control of her and then the car being driven by Crow Daddy. Noticing that Crow Daddy isn't wearing his seat belt, Danny crashes the van into a tree, sending him flying through the windshield and onto the ground ahead where he dies.
As Danny is attacked by Rose in the Colorado Lounge in the Overlook Hotel, Danny reveals the ace up his sleeve: letting all of the ghosts of the Overlook out of their boxes in his mind and freeing them to their old haunts. The spirits attack Rose and consume her.
After killing rose, The Overlook spirits swarm over Dan and literally get under his skin, until Dan is right back where his father was all those years ago: fully possessed by the evil entity that is the Overlook Hotel. After confronting Abra in Room 237, Possessed Danny realizes that real Dan set the boiler room in the hotel to explode, and tries to sabotage the process - but it's too late. Just before the Overlook blows up into an inferno of flames, Danny is visited by the ghost of his mother, who embraces the ghost of Danny, now a child again.
Abra watches the Overlook Hotel burn, knowing Danny isn't gone forever. Sure enough, Dan honors the tradition and duty of being a mentor to a younger shiner, appearing in Abra's bedroom to give her guidance, just like the ghost of Dick Hallorann provided for Danny all his life. With Danny in her life, Abra seems ready to carry the Shining legacy forward.