The Shining (Stanley Kubrick, 1980)

A quick review.

When one of the best movie directors Stanley Kubrick decided to move away from his usual genres and produce a horror, we expected great and horrifying things.  Needless to say this expectation was exceeded with the 1980’s adaption of Steven King’s novel of The Shinning.   This masterpiece has fantastic use of camera angles, music and character development. It really is one of the best horror films ever made.

We all go a little stir crazy if we have been trapped inside all day. Forced to stare at the TV screen when nothing is on or just sit and find work to do.  So, when the Torrance family is forced to house sit/ hotel sit the most haunted hotel in America throughout the whole of winter. Can we really blame them for going insane? By insane I mean killing each other, speaking to ghosts and writing “Red rum” all over the walls.

The Shining movie poster

The Shining movie poster

Stanley Kubrick and Steven King are able to follow Jack Torrance (Jack Nicholson), Wendy Torrance (Shelley Duvall) and Danny Torrance (Danny Lloyd) into the midst of insanity and the dead of the overlook hotel. Brining to the horror fans some of the greatest scares and lines of the genre.  With cameras following Danny around each corner, unable to see the true horrors of the hotels past until the characters does, the audience is in for a treat.  We jump between the real world and the world of the dead, seeing the hotel truly come to life. I also find that with Jack Nicholson being casted for the role adds something to the film. This is because he already looks insane even before he enters the Overlook.

Here’s Johnny !!!

All work and no play makes jack a dull boy

However, as Jack Nicholson as the terrifying father attempting to kill his entire family and become the new owner of the hotel, it is up to 5 year old Danny to save the day.  Danny is just an ordinary boy who happens to have The Shinning. Meaning that he can read peoples thought and see the past, it is both a blessing and a curse in this house of horrors.

On the other hand, with every film based on a novel some of the parts are left out. If you are a fan of the original text you would wonder where the hedge animals are.  If you don’t know what I mean, there are hedge animals in the gardens of the hotel. These hedges just happen to come to life and change their positions every time you turn around.  They are much like a plant version Doctor Who’s Weeping Angels.  They are also the only characters in a book who have managed to scare me whilst reading.

This film is just one of the classics and should be adored and respected by all.  REDRUM REDRUM REDRUM!

Check out how music in the Shinning really does make a difference. ( All rights go to  itsConnor) Apologies for the sound quality.

April Ely – Deathbyapril

How have you not seen this?



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