Movie Review: The Shining

Before I begin, I would like to say that I would have eventually seen this film, being a Kubrick fan. However, I needed an extra push. Earlier this year, I was looking about IMDB and found that Room 237 would be released later that year. It was the director that intrigued me and that told me that I needed to see The Shining before Room 237. I bought a secondhand copy and saw it. I didn’t think much of it but after multiple viewings I started to dig deeper. After starting this blog, I knew that I wanted to review this but could not do so until after watching Room 237. I’ll explain why in that review but for now, let’s drive to the Overlook Hotel.

Jack Torrance goes to the Overlook Hotel for an interview to be the winter caretaker. He later arrives with his family and things pretty much go downhill. That’s the short version because I’d rather talk about the atmosphere and the details I picked up.

It is said that Eraserhead was shown to the cast so that they could get a better understanding for the movie’s mood. In relation to this movie, I suppose there are a few similarities. The soundtrack is minimal but still haunting. Obviously there are bizarre events in both films that aren’t explained. However, in my opinion, there is not enough correlation between the two films for it to be a major influence.

In the scene where Jack sees Lloyd, there is a part where Jack begins to drink. Jack is seen in three forms. You have the actor Jack Nicholson playing Jack Torrance drinking Jack Daniels. What exactly this means, I’m not sure but it’s an interesting fact.

The name “Torrance” sounds similar to “torrent,” as in the torrent of blood that gushes from the elevators.

Each time the exterior of the hotel is shown as the days wear on, it’s shown farther away. It shows how isolated the family is from the world as they plunge into the horror.

Of course, I have done my best to not mention the alternate theories behind the movie. I had come across them before my first viewing and had thought of them when watching. But, like HAL 9000, I never gave them much credence. Afterwards, I found some more theories but dismissed them as completely ridiculous. At the same time, the people who believed those theories intrigued me and led me to Room 237.

For me, I enjoy this movie for intellectual purposes. I like to work on puzzles and when I come across a film that has multiple layers I take it as a challenge to figure out what it means to me. I do not have a defined personal meaning as of yet for this film but it’s one that I will enjoy for years to come.

9/10

1001 MYMSBYD selection

IMDB Top 250

Overlook Hotel

July 4th Ball

1921

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