Friday, March 05, 2010
Stanley Kubrick's The Shining: "The first epic horror film" (1980)
A quintessential cult classic, Stanley Kubrick's The Shining features the Torrence family and their winter residence as off-season caretakers for the isolated Overlook Hotel. The film is fabulously freaky and whether it’s bloody hallways, attention crazed and creepy twins, or a menacing maze made of hedges, Kubrick manages to feature multiple moments of nail-biting suspense, successfully keeping the innocent and unsuspecting movie viewer on the edge of their seat. Jack Torrence (Jack Nicholson) an amiable and aspiring writer is quickly possessed by the evil atmosphere of the Overlook Hotel and threatens to lose control and seriously slaughter his wife (Shelley Duvall) and son (Danny Lloyd). Kubrick effectively organizes this epic horror and illustrates Jack’s psychotic progression through documenting the days of the week as they become increasingly deadlier. Trapped and alone, Wendy and Danny Torrence are on their own to protect themselves against the Overlook’s supernatural power and the haunting hotel’s effect on Jack. It is this defenseless feeling and Jack Nicholson’s terrifically terrifying performance that provides a relatable sense of fear recognizable in any decade. Although distinctly 80s due to the psychedelic carpet and fashions decorating the luxurious Overlook, The Shining not only gives the classic phrases “Here’s Johnny!” and “Redrum! Redrum!” but most certainly stands the test of time as it continues to provide chills and thrills to current audiences of all ages. So whether you are the movie buff or the casual film viewer, The Shining is a must-see for anyone looking for a classic, good scare.