Skip to main content

31 Days of Horror Movies: The Shining

With the possible exception of Suspiria, all of the films I've written about this month have been personal favorites. It's my blog, so that makes sense. But if one is doing an overview of a particular subject, there are some entries that must be made which may be admired, rather then liked, by the person doing the write-up. And that brings us to today's horror film...

The Shining

Y'all know the drill with this one. Jack Nicholson and Shelley Duvall as husband & wife Jack and Wendy Torrance, and Danny Lloyd as their strange son Danny, who talks to his fingers. Oh, and the woefully under-used and too-easily dispatched Scatman Crothers as a chef with special powers.

Anyway, the Torrance family arrives at the isolated Overlook Hotel so they can look after the place while it's closed during the winter. Some weird stuff begins to happen: Jack writes a very simple book. Wendy walks around looking goofy and concerned. Danny generally acts creepy, except he's little, so it's not so bad. Odd bartenders and freaky twin girls show up, and some blood gushes down the hallways.

If it comes across as though I dislike The Shining, that isn't the case. It's just that I view its sums to be better than its whole. It certainly has some wonderfully horrific moments: the 'Redrum' bit, the aforementioned creepy characters and bloody hallway, the mental deterioration of Jack Torrance and, of course, the maze behind the hotel. But as an overall movie, The Shining has always seemed a bit lacking.

I do think it possible to appreciate something while not really enjoying it. Thus we have my view of The Shining. It has riveting performances by the three leads (Duvall, Lloyd and Nicholson), and features a pretty nifty melding of Kubrick & King (even if the latter has issues with it). It should definitely be included in a month of horror films, but more out of respect than anything else.


Popular posts from this blog


Ok, we're now three-fourths of the way through this year's calendar, so I thought I'd rank the thirty-eight 2017 movies I've seen so far.

Here they are....

1. A Quiet Passion
2. Baby Driver
3. Dunkirk
4. Get Out
5. Kedi
6. A Ghost Story
7. Wonder Woman
8. Columbus
9. Brad's Status
10. Marjorie Prime
11. Maudie
12. Logan
13. Spider-Man: Homecoming
14. Guardians of the Galaxy, Vol. 2
15. Brigsby Bear
16. Atomic Blonde
17. The Big Sick
18. Split
19. Kong: Skull Island
20. It
21. Wind River
22. A Cure for Wellness
23. The Hitman's Bodyguard
24. Norman
25. Kingsman: The Golden Circle
26. Logan Lucky
27. Alien Covenant
28. Ghost In the Shell
29. War for the Planet of the Apes
30. Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales
31. Life
32. Annabelle: Creation
33. Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets
34. My Cousin Rachel
35. Baywatch
36. The Bye Bye Man
37. mother!
38. It Comes at Night

It will be interesting to see what the last three months of the year brin…

The Best Superhero Movies of All-Time, Revisited

We are just a few days away from the North American release of Avengers:Infinity War. While I am dutifully going to see it opening night, it's not a film I'm looking forward to. It is (spoiler) part one of two, which means we can expect plenty of plot threads left dangling when the credits roll. In other words, part two will probably be better, and provide some actual resolution. Also, Thanos looks like a CGI yawn-fest. Hopefully, I'll be proved wrong.
Nevertheless, this is a good opportunity to rank (again) the major superhero movies (Marvel and otherwise) that we've had so far. As you know, I love making a list, and this one is going to be a definitive one! If you don't see a film on here, it's because I haven't seen it (the first two Thors, Iron Man 2, some of the X-Men features, etc.).   Alright, here we go.

Walk and Chew Gum

Yesterday marked a touchstone moment in the U.S., as students across the country participated in "walkouts." This was an occasion for students to express an array of thoughts and emotions, ranging from a desire for stricter gun control, to simply sorrow over the loss of so many of their peers to school shootings. They were peaceful protests, but protests nonetheless. Where you're at on the spectrum of agreeing or disagreeing with what they did may vary, though not wanting to get shot in your school seems pretty reasonable to me.
Some folks have taken to sharing a meme on social media platforms this week -- in direct anticipation and response to the walkouts -- that encourages students to "walk up, not out." Following are suggestions provided for the walk ups:

Walk UP to the kid who sits ALONE and ask him to join your groupWalk UP to the kid who never has a voluntary partner and offer to be hersWalk UP to your teachers and thank them!Walk UP to someone and JUST …