Shine On: Episode 2: The Source

Since I started watching The Shining, I have heard enough about how the Kubrick version deviates from the book. Last week, I decided it was time to look at the source material. Yes, there are differences but there are also some items that were kept in the Kubrick version, albeit in a different form. Most of the differences can be found on Wikipedia, some of which I’ll discuss here, but I’ve found some more that are, well, overlooked.

First, Jack Torrance has a reason for his behavior. In the book, King has taken the time to give Jack a backstory, flaws, and a relatable personality. Reading it, I felt sorry for the poor man, something I couldn’t do with the screen adaptation. The book allowed us to live with the family and go through the trials of the Overlook. The movie is more of a cinematic microscope as we see things happen without any personal connection.

I believe the wasp nest, while not in the film, is referenced in the infamous trailer. If you listen to it, you can hear a buzzing sound not unlike angry wasps.

Of course, there’s the whole room number change from 217 to 237. I just accept the fact the change happened and leave it at that.

The alternate narrative theories (e.g. the Native American genocide, the Holocaust) are not just film-only. Brief statements are made in the book but are more for a comparison to the current situation. The “implied meaning” is up to the viewer for the movie and can be pursued or acknowledged.

The ending is vastly different for both sources. The movie had a different ending but was removed early in the release. The book allows for a satisfactory closure that allows for the possibility of a sequel which has happened.

Looking back, reading the book has lead me to reconsider the movie’s treatment of the story as a whole. I would say that even though I consider it to be a favorite, I do not think the story translated well to screen. Not everything could be shown in the adaptation due to running time but completely changing a character’s personality seems a bit much.

There was a story earlier this year that this movie would get a prequel and would feature the hotel’s backstory. I’m not sure where I stand on that yet.

Shine On: Episode 1: The Shone Report




Since my dual review of The Shining and Room 237, I have done some thinking. I went back and watched The Shining and looked for some of the connections made in Room 237. While I did make some objective observations, my mindset was not the same as theirs. That said, I keep finding new things that I may have missed before. Instead of having to go back through and updating posts, I decided to make a series of supplemental material about The Shining and my personal observations.

First, some ground rules. I do not subscribe to any one theory about the “true” secondary narratives behind the film, like Indian genocide or the faked moon landings. I do acknowledge that while the theories exist, I choose not to believe them. I may mention them from time to time but that does not mean I support them. Any observations I have are from my own cognizance upon repeated viewings of said film and factual research. These observations will range from events in the film to those when I’m not watching and the connections comes to mind.

With that out of the way, let’s take a look at “The Shone Report.” One night when me and my editing partner were working on WONKA, we were looking for music to use for the beginning part of the trailer. I showed him the title sequence and we agreed to use it for the trailer. During a break, he came across this and we watched it. I thought it was total nonsense and that the incidences of “Shone” were inserted outside of the source material, that being the movie and every element in it. Months later, I turned up the volume during one viewing just to see if they were really there; turns out they were.

The particular instances that I did hear, as labeled by the video, were 1, 2, 3, 5, 7, 8, 10, and 14; that’s 50% observed, 50% undetected from one person. Those instances are audible, not something along the lines of Aladdin and what good girls do.

Now, the connections between each instance and the logic behind them starts to range into Tinfoil Territory. Don’t get me wrong, half of the fun in a movie or TV series that has puzzle pieces are the theories and speculations; it’s a part of the legacy. But you can only go so far before it becomes ridiculous.

Outside the film, I was working on a shoot for one part of a larger recycling campaign for the city; I was the guy with the clapperboard. After one take, a guy said to the talent that he shone, explaining that he looked into the camera. He did not explain where the term came from but I figured he was referring to this report, specifically instances 2, 3, and 5. I regret not asking him if he meant what I thought he meant. Still, it was an interesting coincidence.

I admire Stanley Kubrick for what he has done with this interpretation of the book. His eye for detail is truly remarkable and something I like to emulate. Whether or not these incidences are intentional, we will never know but it’s one of the many layers that make up this movie.