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Thinner is a 1996 horror film directed by Tom Holland and written by Michael McDowell with the screenplay by Tom Holland. The film is based on the Stephen King novel of the same name.



Billy Halleck is an arrogant obese upper-class lawyer who lives in suburban Connecticutmarker. One day while driving, he accidentally runs over an old Gypsy woman with his car when his wife distracts him by performing oral sex on him. The Gypsy woman's father, Tadzu Lempke, who is 106 years old, curses Billy by touching him and saying, "Thinner." The curse causes Billy to lose weight rapidly, regardless of how much he eats. The old man also curses two of Billy's close friends who helped him lift the charges for the Gypsy woman's death. Later both of them commit suicide.

Because only Lempke can remove the curse since he put it on, Billy must persuade the ancient Gypsy to lift the curse with the help of his friend, an underworld crime boss by the name of Richie "The Hammer" Ginelli. Richie decides to cause a ruckus among the gypsies' camp by killing one of them and almost killing another. Each time he leaves a note saying "WHITE MAN FROM TOWN SAYS TAKE IT OFF". It's a desperate race for survival; time is running out for Billy as he becomes even thinner and draws closer to his own death.

Ultimately, Lempke is persuaded to alter the curse. However, he explains that he cannot remove it but only transfer it and does so to a strawberry pie. The curse is transferred such that anyone who consumes it will die a horribly painful death. Lempke begs him to end the curse and commit suicide with dignity by eating his own pie. Wanting revenge on his wife for supposedly cheating on him, Billy leaves the pie out for her to eat. The next morning he wakes up to find his dead wife next to him in bed. After going downstairs gleefully, he finds that his daughter has also eaten a slice—much to his horror. Feeling guilty about the whole ordeal, he decides to listen to what Lempke said about dying with dignity and have one as well. Before he can take the first bite, he's interrupted by a ring of the doorbell. At the door is the man he believes his wife had the affair with; he invites the man in for a piece of pie, and the movie cuts out.


  • Author Stephen King, who lives in Bangor, Mainemarker, appears as the pharmacist Dr. Bangor.
  • The movie was filmed largely in Thomaston, Camden, and Rockland, Maine. These towns are about an hour and a half drive from King's home in Bangor, Maine.


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