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The Shining (1980)

Posted on the 24 June 2012 by Rajtilak @rajtilak
The Shining (1980)
Close you eyes, hold my hand, let me guide you through that door. And while you are at it, let me remind you something. Let me remind you of 'Hotel California'. Can you hear those lines behind that darkness of your closed eyes where they say that you can check-out any time you like but you can never leave! Well, now you can open your eyes and let me welcome you to the Overlook Hotel!
Adapted from a Stephen King novel of the same name, The Shining is a journey of a man into the land of his darkest desires. Directed by Stanley Kubrick (who also happens to write the screenplay for this movie), The Shining is the story of Jack Torrence (Jack Nicholson), his wife Wendy Torrance (Shelley Duvall) and their son Danny Torrance (Danny Lloyd). Jack takes the duties as the caretaker of the Overlook Hotel for the winters. It located high up in the secluded mountains of Colorado and because of the heavy snowfall during the winters it remains closed. This winter the only people to stay in the Overlook Hotel would be Jack, his wife and son. Or is it? Because something is not quite right with the Overlook Hotel, something is just doesn't right. Danny feels it too, and so does the cook of the Overlook Hotel, Dick Hallorann (Scatman Crothers) because both of them have something share a secret of their own. Both of them have a gift that Dick loves to call the Shining, a gift that lets them see the future, or precisely the horrors that awaits them in their future. And the Overlook Hotel has plenty of unimaginable horror in store awaiting them because it is the sinister breeding ground of the evil which brings out all our darkest fears and evil desires, without making you repent about it.
The Shining is certainly not Kubrick's best creation, but its definitely one of them. And although King was not quite happy about Kubrick's movie adaptation of his novel, yet the claustrophobic paranoia that plagued the Torrance family while they stay in the Overlook Hotel, the demonic possession of the Hotel and the haunting monstrosity of the eerie environment was brilliantly handled by Kubrick. The clackity-clacks of the Danny's tricycle riding along the empty hallways of the hotel, the labyrinthian garden representing our mind's fine line between sane and insane, the incredibly scary music of B茅la Bart贸k and the superb use of the Steadicam which gave us the sense of ever-following evil makes this movie creepier, so much so that it didn't have to depend solely on stomach-churning gory images to scare the audience unlike the contemporary movies of the horror genre.
And then we have Jack Nicholson. His powerful performance as the mad father and husband is as over the top as it is brilliant. When we see him coming after his wife with an axe in his hands, while he was repeatedly writing the same thing over and over again in the name of writing a novel, or while we see his face piercing out of the half-broken bathroom door and calling out to his wife gnashing his teeth for revenge, for a while it makes us go numb in fear.
Overall, The Shining is an unforgettable, chilling, terrorizing, majestic and truly, profoundly horror film crafted by an eccentric genius who wants to show that the impossible can be done. The Shining is a sublime, hauntingly intriguing and endlessly watchable film that shows Kubrick at his best.
[Image Courtesy: These Creases Daily]

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