Since its release in 1980, THE SHINING has run the gamut of hypothesis and theories that encapsulates Stanley Kubrick’s film as an intricate, psychological entry into the horror genre; one that is too often ridiculed for lacking intellectual depth or foresight. While most know how far Kubrick veered from the original novel, which Stephen King has openly scrutinized, going as far to produce a mini-series in 1997, what THE SHINING does effectively is utilize time and space in a deliberate effort to entrench us in a descent into madness. Even as the opening credits scroll backwards across the screen, an effect that tells us that the beginning is already the end, we are only allowed access to so much, gliding over our ascending vehicle yet never gaining access to who or what force propels it towards impending doom. Only when it is too late, and we are in the Overlook Hotel, our murderously bloodied winter lodging, are we given entry to the past; one that is covered up with lies and fear induced rationality.
Tag: Danny Lloyd
By Christina Moreno
The Shining – 1980 – dir. Stanley Kubrick
The Shining is one of the most respected and well-crafted films of the twentieth century. There are few horror films that rise above the campy reputation of the genre, but those that do remain embedded in the nightmares of the millions of people who dared to watch them. The ability to create fear within an audience is difficult, to say the least. But the ability to keep that fear alive after the movie is over, to keep a person looking over her shoulder while she walks back to her car, is something even the most seasoned filmmakers have trouble doing. The most disturbing aspect of The Shining is that the terror doesn’t rely on the ghosts or the bloody past of the Overlook Hotel. It is the intense isolation of winter coupled with Jack Torrance’s spectacular fall into madness that provides the wonderful (or terrible, depending on if you enjoy being scared) adrenaline rush of fear. With memorable performances by Jack Nicholson, Shelly Duvall, Danny Lloyd, and Scatman Crothers, The Shining is an iconic horror film that continues to scare new generations of viewers.