Thursday, 20 January 2011

The Unhomely - The Shining

The Shining (1980)

Director - Stanley Kubrick

Jack Torrance is a writer suffering from writer block so in an effort to remedy this he accepts a job as a caretaker at a hotel over the winter when the hotel is shut. The he is meant to be spending the next 6 months with his wife and son but there is a hidden past and some sinister goings on that put his writing plans to a holt. The Shining is a master piece of horror. Jack Nicholson's performance as the psychotic husband Jack Torrance and Shelley Duvall as the frantically fearful wife totally sell this film. Film 4 agree "Shelley Duvall contorts and screams up a stunning display of gruesome fear as Jack's terrified wife, Wendy. And Jack Nicholson's performance is, of course, unforgettably deranged." Traditionally horror film have a death toll attatched to them but cleverly this film manages to keep you feeling tense when for the most part there is no death toll.

There seems to be a very split opinion on The Shining, a review from Variety in 1979 makes a description of the main characters as "The crazier Nicholson gets, the more idiotic he looks. Shelley Duvall transforms the warm sympathetic wife of the book into a simpering, semi-retarded hysteric." Yet today it seems to be widely excepted as some of the best performances in cinema horror history.

The Shining (1980), Film 4, [Online] avaliable at [Accessed 20 January 2010]
The Shining (1979), Variety, [Online] avaliable at [Accessed 20 January 2010]

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