on February 17, 2009
Great price for this amazing movie ($10.39 at the time of this writing). I thought I'd just fill you in on what's all included, because I myself took a chance on buying this, (Amazon doesn't seem to tell you whether its wide or full screen, regular or 2-disc, etc).
What you're buying is the 2-disc special edition, in a great cover, Wide Screen. It includes a only a few special features though, but its the film you really want! It's about 10 bucks cheaper than the other 2-disc edition, but it's still the same one. Great buy!
on February 20, 2008
i had heard great things about this movie over the years,but i thought
people were just exaggerating its greatness.imagine my shock when i
finally do end up watching.turns out,the greatness of this movie is not
at all exaggerated.this may be the greatest,most complete horror film i
have ever seen.by complete,i mean it has everything a good horror movie
should have.i'm not talking about your typical hack and and slash gore
fest.i'm talking about pure psychological terror.the suspense in this
movie starts from the get go,and doesn't let up.i gets pretty
unbearable.plus,there are some pretty terrifying images.and the
acting,don't get me started on the acting.it is simply brilliant.i'm
not really a big Jack Nicholson fan,but he leaves nothing on the table
here.Shelley Duvall is also excellent,and the kid who plays there
son,fantastic.the supporting cast are also very good.when you add a
fantastically eerie and terrifying soundtrack,there's nothing else
needed.id' pit this one right up there with the original The
Omen(1976)for sheer terror.the only downside to this movie is that for
some reason,it was only filmed in full frame.if there's ever a movie
that cries out for a widescreen presentation,this is it. 5/5
on April 30, 2004
I'm constantly baffled when I read poor reviews of this film. I suppose I simply have to understand that even a strongly held opinion is still an opion; however, I think that this film is a perfect example of Kubrick at the top of his game.
This film, like all the great Kubrick films, is first and foremost a feast for the eyes. Film is a visual medium - still frames in rapid succession - essentially pictures. Kubrick's composition in this film is wonderful. Don't believe it, actively looking for symmetry in the film should make this apparent. How is it that Kubrick is able to train the eye to see images of symmetry (ie. twins, two elevator doors, matching lamps, and pictures on the walls, etc.) in a way that becomes creepy in the context of the film? And what is Kubrick implying with the shots that take us into the Alice in Wonderland looking glass images of the characters? Asking these questions makes the film much more interesting.
There is subtle leading of the eye and mind and the attempt to elicit a primal response of fear to the landscape of the film. Ultimately, it is a question of preference. If visually engaging films are your thing, this is one that will demand multiple viewings. In my experience, this film has the uncanny ability to imprint its imagery in your mind long after the film is over, much in the same way that a negative of a picture that you focus on intently remains after you close your eyes.
If you didn't like the film on an initial viewing, taking a second look may be worth your while. Regardless of your assessment of Nicholson, the acting in general, the plot or any of these other conventional discussion topics related to the film, this masterful painting of images deserves the viewer's attention.
on June 17, 2004
Stanley Kubrick's THE SHINING (1980) is a cinematic marvel. Visually stunning, emotionally disturbing, it throws everything at you but the kitchen sink---and purposely attempts to explain almost nothing. Kubrick directed this filmic adaptation of the Stephen King bestseller with his finetoothed artistic brush; his genius as a director always coming from his genius as a photographer. However, this didn't stop his film from raising a firestorm of controversy ever since Kubrick began principal photography in 1979. Starting with the author himself, Stephen King was most displeased over the immense amount of changes Kubrick made to his story. When the movie was finally finished and released in 1980, it received cheers & jeers in roughly equal amounts, from critics to Stephen King fans.
I can see both sides to the controversy. What Stanley Kubrick made was a film *based on* the book of the same name, not a film version of the book itself. Although I believe that most people wrongfully assume that a film treatment of a book *has to* be faithful to it, I will agree that Kubrick changed more than what is normal for a book-to-screen adaptation. In doing so, he crafted a movie that was radically different from the novel. On the other hand, many of Kubrick's changes were for the better, the most notable of them being the hedge maze replacing the hedge animals from the book. Besides the fact that the latter would have been really hard to film back in 1979-80, the former added a new dimension of space, shape and horror to the proceedings. It was made effectively creepy and, of course, with the way Kubrick photographs, gave us a real sense of the vulnerability of the Torrance family, being all alone in the middle of a snow-covered nowhere.
Then there is the acting---brilliant, just brilliant. Jack Nicholson, who had already established himself as one of the most important actors of our time with his very well-deserved 1975 Best Actor Oscar for his portrayal of faux-mentally disturbed Randall P. McMurphy in ONE FLEW OVER THE CUCKOO'S NEST, here as Jack Torrance created an equally memorable character that has also been enshrined in movie immortality. Shelley Duvall brings an intensity to Wendy Torrance that was perhaps under-emphasized in the book. Six-year-old Danny Lloyd, in his debut to his very brief film career (he would only do one other film after this one), is compulsively watchable as five-year-old Danny Torrance and completely commands our attention every time he's onscreen. Finally, 70-year-old Scatman Crothers as head cook Dick Hallorann, who shares the terrible gift of clairvoyance with Danny, gives what is probably the most memorable performance in his long and distinguished career.
Yes, there are flaws, most notably the fact that Jack Torrance is made to go off the wall too soon into the film. In the book, it was a gradual incorporation of the hotel's evil spirit; perhaps too slow, but in the movie it happens so fast that we don't get any time to actually *sympathise* with his plight. But the film works on so many visual levels that it can be forgiven for its lack of character development. Be forewarned about showing this to your kids: THE SHINING is a rare phenomenon in that it's much bloodier and gorier than the book; usually it's the other way around with Stephen King books. THE SHINING may not be perfect, but it is nevertheless a Horror classic, a Stanley Kubrick classic and a Jack Nicholson classic---and it leaves us with a final shot that is as haunting as it is thought-provoking.
HIGHLY RECOMMENDED; AGES 15 & UP
on May 29, 2004
This might just as well be the scariest movie of ALL time. I watched this with a couple of friends at 11:00pm at a sleepover party. And lets just say, there was tons of screaming, swearing, and crying. In my opioion and I can say for my friends aswell, if anyone else took the place of Jack Nicholson in this movie, it would be a complete bore.
Upon arrival at the Overlook hotel, Jack Torrence and his family they are warmly welcomed by Dick Hollaran, the Kitchen Cook. Dick has a secret power, and little does Danny know, that he posseses the same power, the ability to know things before they happen. According to Mr. Holloran, this secret power is called The Shining. When Jack Torrence is tormented by the deceased spirits of the last caretakers of the hotel, did I mention that they are spending the winter at the hotel to look over it?, he slowly starts to transform from his fatherly ways of living, and turns into a crazed maniac who is determined to slaughter his family, as did Mr. Mcgrady, the previous caretaker. Inspite of Danny's secret message that he keeps speaking to his mother, REDRUM, Mrs. Torrence continues to try and help her husband in anyways possiable. But when she relizes what is happening, and what the true meaning of RedRum is, she will stop at nothing to save Danny, and get the hell out of The Overlook Hotel.
on April 23, 2004
The scariest is, of course, the original version of The Haunting. But The Shining comes very, very close.
Reading the reviews here is a clue to what makes The Shining so special. Most of the negative posters seem bored by the movie (as well as unable to spell or construct a complex sentence). It's not a movie for children or those with a child's attention span. One example: the scene where Jack and the hallucinated bartender have their first conversation lasts for over five minutes; we keep waiting for some sort of shocker (e.g. the bartender turns around and has no face, or something like that). Instead, Kubrick keeps the scene disturbingly normal, brilliantly allowing Jack's delusional paranoia to feed on itself, which of course is the real horror of the movie. This kind of patience and craft is lost on those used to more pedestrian gorefests, but for those who appreciate subtlety and humor along with sheer mounting terror, it's just one high spot in a movie filled with them.
on April 3, 2004
What can I say, besides, this movie is awesome! Despite being over 2 and a half hours long, it never gets boring for a second. Jack Nicholson is awesome and plays the ultimate madman.
The only thing about this movie, if you want to compare it to the Stephen King book "The Shining" is that this movie is quite a bit different than the book, but that doesn't matter. I'm rating this as a movie, not as a comparison to the book.
Jack's madness seems to be attributed to cabin fever (although spending the winter alone with Shelley Duvall would be enough to drive me insane), and partially to the hotel's ghosts, which apparently can be blamed on the fact that the hotel was built on an indian burial ground.
The acting, by all involved in the movie, was superb. The score is incredibly eerie and fit perfectly in this movie? Special effects? There weren't many, but that just proves that a movie can be scary as heck without them! The hotel itself has a scary look to it too, and isn't the type of place I would feel comfortable being alone in on a dark, stormy night. Just an awesome atmosphere.
The t.v. version of The Shining is worth checking out and is much more faithful to the book, but Kubrick's version is far more effective and entertaining! Your girlfriend or wife will be clinging to you the whole movie! Guaranteed!
on March 10, 2004
The title of my review once haunted my fragile childhood like no other phrase. I saw this movie for the first time when I was 13, and sharing the same name as the boy in the film, it is little wonder why this movie scared the life out of me! The style of the film, with its minimalistic use of music and the cinematographer's use of wide-angle shots to give a sense of open space, make for an interesting experience. Not to mention this movie has "Jack." I once heard that Stephen King hated this rendition of his popular novel, but I think that the story is more visceral and terrifying without the overdose of the supernatural that his novel is prone to. This film is a ghost story by film's end, but a journey into madness along the way. There are some over-the-top moments meant to invoke terror. Like the "Here's Johnny!" scene, or when Danny is riding through the halls on his big-wheel and turns a corner to find twin girls staring at him and chanting, "Come and play with us, Danny. You can play with us forever...and ever...and ever..." But some are simply too much to swallow. Like Shelley Duvall running through the hotel looking for her son and encountering all the hauntings. Of those scenes, only one works. It's the scene when the elevator opens in slow-motion and blood flows from the compartment filling the hallway. Anyway, if you love Jack, then this movie is essential viewing. An interesting side-note: I watched this film again recently and I found myself looking at the film from Jack's perspective instead of the little boy's. I found that to be equally unsettling. Overall, this is very creepy, and a worthy edition to any Horror film collection.
on February 3, 2004
I am an avid Stephen King fan and have read 'The Shining' twice. Despite the fact that Kubrick's interpretation strayed far from the book, it remains one of my favorite King-adapted films and one of my all time favorite horror films.
This movie is a work of absolute genious. It's cold and creepy atmosphere, amazing acting, and technical mastery(my hat goes off to one of the best directors in the biz: RIP, Stanley Kubrick)make it possibly the most unique and thought-provoking horror movie I have ever seen.
Kubrick abandons the conventional techniques of most horror films and depicts the terror in a detached, disturbing fashion, never afraid to show you what's around that dark corner. It is almost completely devoid of jump scenes except for the appearance of two of the title cards. They are punctuated with a jarring orchestral hit that sends you out of your seat, seeming to poke fun at tactics used in mainstream horror to scare the audience. The tension and atmosphere never lets up until the very end. Kubrick delivers scare after scare with frightening precision and brilliance.
Yes, yes, nothing can compare to the horror of the book, but this comes close. It might be entirely different, but I encourage those devout King fans to give this masterpiece a second chance.
on February 1, 2004
The Horror genre seems to really lack when it comes to scaring the audience. Out of all the horror films I've viewed, this is the only one that was able to give me an uneasy feeling after watching it. King fans who think his book version was better than Kubrick's take are just lying to themselves. Let's be honest here... when the guy went to remake The Shining as a TV mini-series, it wasn't scary at all. The kid who played Danny wasn't nearly as convincing as the original. Trying to top Nicholson's over the top performance as Torrance is not possible either. It's true that Kubrick really seemed to focus on the derangement of Jack as opposed to all the ghost elements and the silly Hedge animals coming alive in the book. On the TV version that scene was laughable and really would have been useless in what Kubrick's film was trying to do. The scene where the old decrepit woman is slowly walking after Jack as he leaves the room scared the hell out of me as a kid. The atmosphere is just so unsettling, anyone who tells you they weren't creeped out by this are lying. Hail Kubrick!