Thursday, November 18, 2010

The Shining

The ShiningDirected by: Stanley Kubrick

Release Date: 1980

Being a fan of the original incarnation of this story by Stephen King, I was already a skeptic. When I watched this film ten years ago, I hated it because the film was nothing like the book. When the mini-series of the story was broadcasted in 1997, I appreciated its close interpretation of the story.
Recently, I re-watched this and realized why I hated this movie.


Before I get into my dislike for this picture, I’ll point out the merits of the film.

The film, as most folks know (unless they’ve been living under a rock for the past thirty years), is about writer Jack Torrance’s descent into madness while being the caretaker of the Overlook Hotel in the winter. There’s two frightful twins holding hands, gallons of blood pouring out of an elevator, a deranged Jack Nicholson chasing after a petrified and scared Shelley Duvall, and cute little Danny Torrance talking to his finger (“Redrum”). The movie had an eerie atmosphere due to the color scheme and of course, the environment. An isolated haunted hotel with a hedge maze? A perfect formula for a horror film. On any other circumstances, I would have enjoyed this picture but Jack killed that joy for me.

Why did I hate this years later? It was the Jack Nicholson show! Yes, Nicholson did a fantastic job at being a raving lunatic possessed by the evil at the Overlook Hotel but this story wasn’t only about Jack, it was about the evil. Mostly, the movie appeared to be a vehicle for Jack Nicholson because I didn’t see Jack Torrance, I saw Jack Nicholson playing a caricature of other roles I’ve seen him in.
I was abhorred while watching the picture; what the frak was this?!?! Maybe I’m still not ready for this movie or maybe I’m just not meant to watch it again. I like Jack Nicholson but not like this.