Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Overlooked Film

Stanley Kubrick's The Shining will be playing theatres in Britain this Halloween.  It'll be the U.S. version, 24 minutes longer that what they've seen before. In the Hollywood Reporter piece announcing the rerelease, we get this:

Based on Stephen King's bestselling novel, Kubrick’s tale of a family man and would-be writer ([Jack] Nicholson) going mad as winter caretaker of the cursed Overlook Hotel is a seminal work of the genre. Kubrick’s film has been described as a masterpiece of modern horror and is widely considered to be one of the most terrifying movies ever made.

Really?  Remember, this is a news article, not a press release.

When the film was released in 1980, the general feeling was one of disappointment.  There had been great anticipation--a Kubrick film was an event--but the reviews were mixed.  The film made a profit, but it wasn't a huge hit.  Stephen King publicly expressed his disappointment over the adaptation.

Many felt the film didn't capture the supernatural horror of the book. They also felt the pacing was slow.  The biggest complaint was about Jack Nicholson.  In the novel, the protagonist goes mad (or is driven mad) whereas Jack starts out pretty nuts and doesn't have far to go. Shelley Duvall as the hysterical wife also got a lot of brickbats.

I'll admit the film has aged reasonably well--it's got a look and style that sets it apart from a conventional horror film (or a conventional anything), and once you know not to expect the sorts of payoffs any other adaptation would have provided, it's easier to concentrate on what Kubrick is going for.

Still, I wasn't aware it's reached classic status.  And terrifying?  It's creepy, it's ominous, it's brooding, but I wouldn't say there's a lot of terror.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yeah, well, you want disappointing, try this: My four nephews, ages 8 to 12, had never seen it, and at Christmas time, visiting grandpa in Florida, about a dozen of us altogether, we decided we'd see the shining on dvd.

Fanned out across the city looking for it, and one in our group finally found it, after several false starts. As far as we knew it was the only available copy, and we looked.

Got home, plugged it in, and ominously who should appear on the screen, but Steven Weber.

3:19 AM, August 14, 2012  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Never seen it in its entirety. Function of TV and & seeing bits & pieces on TV /HBO over the years. However, the the extrafilm cultural referents - "REDRUM" "Here's Johnny!" "All work & no play..." that still get repeated every Halloween lead you to believe that it is a "classic" of some sort and we all know belief creates its own reality. Maybe that was what Kubrick was going for.

3:56 AM, August 14, 2012  
Blogger LAGuy said...

I sometimes think the Steven Weber Shining really helped the reputation of Stanley Kubrick's version. You've got Stephen King whining for almost two decades about the movie and he finally gets to do his own version and you realize just how bad it could be.

9:04 AM, August 14, 2012  
Blogger Dongdong Weng said...

chi flat irons
michael kors bag
kevin durant shoes
jordan 8s
ray ban sunglasses
michael kors outlet
true religion
kate spade outlet
lebron james shoes
fitflop footwear
michael kors handbags
burberry outlet online
celine outlet
oakley sunglasses
oakley galsses
jordan concords
christian louboutin sale
chanel uk
abercrombie & fitch
coach factory outlet
coach outlet
jordan 11 low
louis vuitton handbags
hollister clothing store
michael kors uk
cheap toms
michael kors bag
kate spade outlet
gucci outlet online
chanel bags outlet
ralph lauren outlet
mont blanc pens
air max uk

1:45 AM, June 17, 2015  
Blogger Wenhao Guo said...

uggs sale
louis vuitton handbags
louis vuitton
louis vuitton outlet
canada goose Jacket/Parka/Coats
louis vuitton outlet
louis vuitton handbags
abercrombie fitch
uggs outlet
michael kors outlet
coach factory outlet
michael kors outlet
gucci outlet
jordan 8
cheap jordans
timberland boots
toms outlet
michael kors outlet
jordan 3
coach outlet
louis vuitton
lerbron james shoes
michael kors handbags
louis vuitton
christian louboutin shoes
coach outlet
louis vuitton handbags
louis vuitton outlet
oakley sunglasses,oakley vault,prescription sunglasses,polarized sunglasses,aviator sunglasses,spy sunglasses,oakleys,oakley canada,cheap oakley sunglasses,oakley frogskins,oakley holbrook,cheap sunglasses,wayfarer sunglasses,oakley standard issue,fake oakleys,oakley glasses,oakley.com,oakley prescription glasses,oakley goggles,sunglasses for men,oakley gascan,oakley store,oakleys sunglasses
canada goose outlet
coach outlet
ugg boots
coach factory outlet
ray ban sunglasses
michael kors handbags

6:18 PM, October 19, 2015  
Blogger Nike Free said...

coach store
coach outlet store online
kate spade surprise sale
kate spade bags
michael kors purses
Michael Kors Cheap
michael kors jewelry
michael kors outlet
michael kors handbags on sale
michael kors jet set tote
michael kors factory
michael kors bags
michael kors uk
michael kors tote
jordan shoes
jordans shoes
lebron 12
kobe 9
nike air max 90
nike air max thea
nike free 5.0
nike free run
Red Bottom Shoes
christian louboutin uk
mbt usa
mbt outlet
fitflops on sale
fitflop shoes
All Balck Huarache
Nike Air Huarache
christian louboutin 2016

10:21 PM, March 27, 2016  
Blogger chenlili said...

ugg outlet
nike air max
ugg boots
polo ralph lauren
adidas nmd runner
christian louboutin heels
ray ban wayfarer
cheap uggs
timberland shoes
true religion outlet

9:42 PM, December 22, 2016  

Post a Comment

<< Home

web page hit counter