Friday night I had my friends Jim, Tom and Tim over for the first “movie night” in our new family room. I’ve been wanting to watch The Shining for a while, but Tammy wasn’t interested [1. To be clear, Tammy has seen the Shining many times. She just didn’t feel like watching again.]. I’m not much for watching any movie by myself, much less one of the most disturbing horror movies of all time.
The Shining has kept a firm place in my psyche for over two decades. I don’t remember when I first saw it, but I do know that I was most likely far too young to see it. When I was a kid I had a ridiculously good imagination and if a room was dark, like when you go to sleep at night, I could see clearly whatever was in my head. The Grady twins were often in my head after seeing it.
It’s still a fantastically freaky movie but now I can appreciate the cinematography and the delightful cadence of the dialogue. I don’t know if there is any movie that has so many pauses in dialogue that just leave you hanging there. If your curious to learn more, the Shining Wikipedia page is a good starter and then the essay Hidden Meanings in the Shining by Bill Blakemore as well as Mazes, Mirrors, Deception and Denial by Rob Ager. Both of these leave you with a much deeper appreciation of everything going on in the movie.
If you haven’t watched the Shining, or if it’s been a while, read some of those essays and give it another watch. Details will pop out from everywhere, but you’ll still be terrified. :-)