‘The Shining’: A Chilling Classic

Vicki Zhang, Staff

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Imagine having the power to see the future or sense any dangers. One day, you have a vision that your father goes insane and decides to hunt you and your mom with an ax while being locked in a huge haunted hotel. What are you going to do? In 1980, Warner Bros released the movie, The Shining. It was inspired by the book written by Stephen King in 1977.   

The Shining is known for its chilling horror and is considered to be one of the best big-screen adaptations of a Stephen King story even to this day. Many students still talk about this movie in school despite the oldness of the movie. The movie is rated R due to the huge amounts of blood and violence shown.  

The main characters are Jack Torrance (Jack Nicholson), Wendy Torrance (Shelly Duvall), and Danny (Danny Lloyd). The Torrance family traveled to Colorado Rockies after Jack accepted the role to be an off-season caretaker of the Overlook Hotel, an isolated historical place with a cursed past.  

The acting of the main antagonist of the movie, Jack Torrance, is on point. When he smiles, his eyebrows extend upwards with jagged edges, and his lips vanish to reveal his brilliantly white teeth makes—this makes the audience shiver. His face looks like a ghoul that hasn’t slept for weeks as the movie progresses. Just a glance of his face gives the audience chills. Torrance was driven to insanity by isolation, alcoholism, and the evil forces lurking in the Overlook Hotel. 

Other characters are performed equally as well. Wendy displays major fear when interacting with the psychotic Jack, shaking furiously while her eyes are bulging and crying. Danny’s frightened face that never smiles make scenes intense and mysterious, and he often speaks in a weird voice when in frightening trances as his imaginary friend Tony.  

The movie setting mainly revolves around the huge Overlook Hotel. It has many rooms with beautiful scenery, especially when it is snowing outside. The pure white layer of snow outside of the hotel makes the whole scene shine. The Gold Room in the hotel looks extremely luxurious with glowing gold jewels everywhere in the room. Jack often hallucinates about drinking alcohol with Lloyd, his bartender, in that room. Although the scenery is extravagant and fancy, the plot of the movie makes this gorgeous hotel seem spooky and haunted.  

The maze located outside of the Overlook Hotel plays a main role in the hair-raising effect of the movie too. As Jack chases Danny with an ax through the maze on a snowy night, it gives the audience a feeling of uneasiness because Danny is in danger.  

The background music played throughout the movie is frightening with the sound of shrieking strings and discordant beats. This music gives people anxiety because it creates a feeling that something terrible will happen at any moment.  

If you are looking for a horror movie that is chilling to the bone, The Shining is a good movie to watch with your friends and family.