Monday, 19 December 2016

Film Review: The Shining

'The Shining' was directed by Stanley Kubrick and was based off the Novel " The Shining" by Steven King.

Roger Ebert said : "Stanley Kubrick's cold and frightening 'The Shining' challenges us to decide: Who is the reliable observer? Whose idea of events can we trust?" (Ebert, June 18th 2006)

While watching The Shining, I came to the conclusion that a big part of the movie was the design aspect, The hotel being the main scene in the film, from what was shown seemed to be designed like a maze with tight long corridors, this gave a sense of isolation as the rooms were wide and tall.

Scenes in which a single person would be in standing in a room gave off a big sense that this person was truly alone. Another aspect of design would be the patterns and colours of the rooms, the walls of the hotel were mainly painted red which is a similar colour to blood and bruises. As for the patterns, the floor style and walls had an art deco design but also the symbols on the floor looked very similar to a maze, something I had noticed at the start where the main protagonists home was shown, was that all their walls and furniture was coloured white, just a theory of mine but this may be a possible look at good and evil as the colour white is generally depicted as good as for the alternative would be red depicting evil.

Anne Billson "In years to come I would begin to appreciate Kubrick’s film for what it was, rather than what it wasn’t. The Steadicam shots of Danny riding his tricycle around the hotel corridors are a masterclass in building tension." ( Billson, october 27th 2016)

The hotel as we are told began construction in 1907 and was finished in 1909, the area in which the hotel was built on, was previously an old indian burial ground, as the beliefs of the indians this ground would be classed as cursed ground.

The story also has aspects of supernatural powers and a theory of reincarnation, in the film we are told that the protagonists son has a power called shining, which is in a way seen as a sixth sense of being able to see darkness in the future but also is known to allow someone to see the past, it is not told but from common knowledge of what the film has told us, Jack also has the power of shining, this is how he is able to see the past and interact with the lost memories of the hotel. 

I believe that the shining is truly the reason Jack goes mad, and possibly might be the way in which reincarnation is shown, the isolation and claustrophobia of the hotel was a way of keeping jack inside so that the old spirit of Delbon Grady could influence and posses Jack,  Delbon Grady; who as we find out at the end of the film was the old reincarnation of jack. In achieving the corruption of Jacks mind the end goal would be to eventually create an endless cycle of all the reincarnations of jacks past and future versions of his spirit being influenced into going to the hotel and resulting in a tragic event.

 Jack wishes to stay at the hotel forever and one spiritual way is that your spirit is stuck at the place you have died and so if jack murdered his family and himself his spirit and his families would be in a permeant loop of murder at the hotel.

Another theory would be going back to the indian burial ground that in their tradition they would have had blood sacrifices and Jack may just be being influenced to carry out this tradition without even knowing what he is truly doing.


the entire aspect of the design and story of the film is that it is a maze, as this all leads up to the finale of the film in which they have the final show down in the maze and the truth is finally revealed.

Roger Ebert, June 18th 2006,

Anne Billson, October 27th 2016,

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