The Shining (1980)
Dir- Stanley Kubrick
As a filmmaker, Stanley Kubrick is one of the best when you team him with an outstanding novel by horror writer Stephen King you have a film that will set a place in cinema history. Before I go any further, I would like to add that it is weird how this film seems to have such a strong response from the horror community that the film is either loved or truly loathed. Jack Nicholson is a school teacher turned writer who takes a job as a caretaker of a Colorado resort. He takes his wife (Shelley Duvall), a 5-year-old boy (Danny Lloyd), along looking forward to the resort's peace and solitude. They meet Dick Hallorann (Scatman Crothers), who works as a cook, explains the finer points of the hotel, and develops a bond with the son. The boy learns of his special gift, The Shine, the ability to communicate without words. This psychic sense gives the young boy fears that his father may hurt his mother and himself. As the days go by and the snow falls, we witness Jack spending hours typing away; at the same time, his son has some bizarre psychic revelations. Kubrick, who uses his familiar theme of dehumanization and alienation, handles the eventual breakdown most uniquely; Jack has many strange visions and begins to feel the hotel possessing him. Will he fall into total madness, or will he be able to take back control before he kills his family? There are many arguments over whether this film captures the true spirit of the novel or merely allows Kubrick to indulge in his own story. You can debate both sides, and all of this seems to distract from the outstanding film and one of the best horror movies of the 1980s.