The Shining is a nightmare-makin’ and terrifyin’ flick
Author: Ethan Butterfield
Ahhh, Netflix. The home of never-ending movies and TV shows that this wonder of modern
technology has to offer is truly something to behold: from action-popcorn flicks to the flat out disturbing. Speaking of which, what is the most disturbing movie on Netflix? Easy. The Shining.
Now, I absolutely know that someone, somewhere out there is going to disagree and say, “Human Centipede!” The truth is that nothing is quite as mind-bending as Stanley Kubrick’s The Shining. This film was originally a best-selling novel by author Stephen King, but in 1980, the legendary director decided to bring the book to life in one of the greatest movies of all time.
The story goes as such: Jack Torrance (Jack Nicholson), former writer and alcoholic, is given the task of caring for the Overlook Hotel by some business associates. Ah-ha! But this isn’t an ordinary hotel. In this hotel, hundreds of people died after they were trapped by a blizzard. So, obviously, he takes his wife, Wendy (Shelley Duvall), and son, Danny (Danny Lloyd), to the hotel for a getaway.
From there on, shit gradually starts hitting the fan, and this is a pretty big fan. A snowstorm traps the family in the hotel, then Jack starts seeing the spirits of those past telling him to off his wife and son. Did I mention this isn’t a comedy?
Now, if you want to talk about disturbing, this movie really hammers it home. Whether it’s an elevator that releases a tidal wave of blood into a hallway, ghost kids that stand dead-eyed saying, “Come play with us,” a little boy screaming, “Redrum” (which by the way is murder backwards), a beautiful woman that turns into a horrifying creature-like-thing, or a husband that slowly slips into madness as he tries to kill his family, this film will probably make you want to keep the lights on a little longer.
Jack Nicholson is brilliant and…well…disturbing. In his portrayal of Torrance, there’s a creepy scene in the movie when Jack’s wife, Wendy, goes into the living room and looks at what Jack has been writing, to which she discovers a paper that says, “All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy.” Now this would be all fine and dandy if it weren’t for the fact that he created an entire manuscript solely out of those words alone.
Not only that, but then there’s one of the most famous scenes in movie history. It starts with wife and son on the run and Jack carrying an axe in tow. Wendy decides to lock her and Danny in the bathroom as they look for a means of escape. Jack then reaches the bathroom door and starts bringing it down with his axe, to which he says “Here’s JOHNNY!” That alone is a perfect mix of terrifying and crazy.
At the end (and this movie came out in the ‘80s, so I’m going to spoil this with no remorse), Danny runs through a maze until he manages to lose his father, and Jack freezes to death in the snow. Then, a picture comes up at the end of the film showing the former occupants of the Overlook Hotel, with Jack Torrance right in the front. So yeah, the Overlook Hotel: a fun vacation for the whole family.