5. The Running Man
The Running Man was written by King under his pseudonym Richard Bachman, and he apparently wrote it in a week-long binge. It’s a grim story, with a desperate man agreeing to take part in a sadistic game show where he’s stalked across America by lethal hunters.
It was eventually adapted in 1987 as an Arnold Schwarzenegger movie, where he’s a wrongfully accused convict forced to take part in a glossy game show against themed hunters. It’s profoundly camp and silly, but boy is it a lot of fun in the right mindset and a few beers.
It completely misses the point of the book, of course, and lacks the ruthlessly bleak ending. For this reason King isn’t a fan, and he complained in his memoir On Writing about how it turned the book’s protagonist into a pumped-up superhero, which is the exact opposite of Ben Richards in the book.