The Shining

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All of the very base elements of horror are certainly still present inThe Shining. There is a villain, who (or that) is out to destroy someone (it is arguable whether the hotel wants to destroy Jack or his family, or both). There is certainly a supernatural element, made all the more intriguing by the mention of the Indian burial ground, and the ambiguous ghostly ending. Kubrick even alludes to the supernatural or ghost element through his use of cutting. When Stuart Ullman (Barry Nelson) and Bill Watson (Barry Dennen) greet Jack and offer to show him around, Jack says “I better collect my family first,” and he moves further into the hotel as the scene fades into another. The method of this particular dissolve makes the people translucent first so that if the film is paused at 20:44, Jack appears very ghostlike gliding deeper into the hotel to “collect” his family. Kubrick even has a modified chase scene at the end of the film. Slightly foreshadowing the Friday the 13th films, when Jack begins to chase Danny through the hotel, Danny runs along ahead of the plodding, limping, demented Jack, and the audience is led to believe that he will be unable to escape. Of course, Danny does escape and Kubrick instead allows Jack to kill Dick Hallorann (Scatman Crothers). Kubrick gives the audience one very violent moment in a film that the audience expects to be very violent. Given the other films released in near proximity such as The Amityville Horror or Alien, audiences of the time were surely expecting a gruesome and violent movie the likes of which the previously mentioned films had not reached. Kubrick, as always, instead gave the audience a psychological thriller that played (and alluded) more to the likes of Psycho than any of the gore films of the time.

Kubrick’s, The Shining, presents the audience with an average family of three. There is the foreshadowing line that a “normal guy” had the capacity to go insane when isolated inside of the Waldorf Hotel. Danny...
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