The Shining A Rough Guide

'The Shining' A Rough Guide By Stuart Gray (Version 7)
IV Emma

Recent Updates
(01 / 07 / 2008) - This website hasn't been updated for a long time but a lot is still relevent. I may one day get round to editing it back into some shape. Until that day... Just enjoy what's here :)

What follows is a guide broken down into key sections. After each section is a list of links relevant to the section. The links are to all sorts of files, including images, video, audio and WebPages.
The purpose of this is to create a guide to Stanley Kubrick's film 'The Shining' based on the book of the same name by Stephen King. The main focus being on Stanley Kubrick's film not Stephen King's book or mini series.
The guide I hope will become the best resource and key place for information on the film. Bookmark this WebPage and come back once in a while as it will be updated. If you wish to be notified when it's updated please send me an email.
First Things First
Before you go any further into the guide there are a few main things you should of done. Firstly you should have seen 'The Shining'. What I mean by that is you didn't sit and watch it for a bit in between kissing your girlfriend or going out the room every five minutes to check how tea was cooking. You need to turn it on, sit down and actually pay attention.
I recommend you read the book, as it adds to and gives slightly more depth to the film. Also it's interesting as the film deviates from the book in many key ways. But read it after you've seen the film, in my opinion.
If you can't see the film or you saw it a while ago and can't watch it again or you've only seen the European version and want to get a feel for the American version then there is an excellent review / synopsis available on the internet written by Tim Dirks. - 'The Shining' Review / Synopsis By Tim Dirks. - 'The Shining' Internet Movie Database (IMDb) Entry.
Stanley Kubrick (1928 to 1999)
American film director, born in the Bronx, New York. Kubrick joined the staff of the magazine Look as a photographer in the late 1940s. By the time he was 21 he had progressed from making still photographs to making films. He bought a newsreel camera and with the help of a friend shot The Day of the Fight (1951), a 15-minute documentary bought by RKO Pathé News. The company then backed Kubrick to make the one-reel documentary Flying Padre (1951).
With borrowed finances, he made his first feature-length film, Fear and Desire, in 1953, writing, directing, shooting, and editing the film himself. It was a commercial failure, although it received some critical acclaim. His next two films, Killer's Kiss (1955) and The Killing (1956), were similarly received but brought an association with United Artists. Kubrick's antiwar film, Paths of Glory (1957), starring Kirk Douglas, won the Grand Prix de la Critique in Brussels, Belgium, in 1959. These early films were made with low budgets and were noted for their documentary-style realism and vivid and violent detail. In 1960 Kubrick's epic $12 million star-studded Spartacus scored a dramatic success. It was followed by Lolita (1962), based on the novel by Vladimir Nabokov; Dr. Strangelove, or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb (1964); 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968), a landmark science fiction film; the futuristic and violent A Clockwork Orange (1971), from Anthony Burgess's novel; Barry Lyndon (1975), The Shining (1980), from the Stephen King novel; and Full Metal Jacket (1987), concerning military men in the Vietnam War era. Just before Kubrick passed away he completed his last film Eye's Wide Shut (1999). Kubrick directed all of his films, having a strong influence over the photography work. He often wrote and produced them as well. - Kubrick: Biographical Notes By Michel Ciment. - The Kubrick Site. - Stanley Kubrick: The Master Filmmaker. - The Official Warner Brothers Stanley Kubrick Website. - Kubrick Multimedia Film Guide.,+Stanley - Stanley Kubrick Internet Movie Database (IMDb) Entry.

Stephen King (1947 to )
Stephen King is a successful American author of horror and fantasy tales, with more than 100 million copies of his books in print.
Born in Portland, Maine, on September 21, 1947, King earned a bachelor's degree from the University of Maine at Orono in 1970. He wrote his first story at age 7 and sold his first piece to a magazine when he was 18.
In 1973 King published his first novel, Carrie, about a telekinetic woman who wreaks deadly revenge on her high school classmates. Carrie sold four million copies and was made into a film two years later.
A prolific writer, King excels at turning ordinary situations-such as peer pressure, marital stress, or infidelity-into terror. After Carrie he produced many other successes, at one time boasting five titles on the New York Times best-seller list at the same time. His books include The Shining (1976), The Stand (1978), and Misery (1987). Many of his novels have been made into successful films. King has also written under the pseudonym Richard Bachman. - Official Stephen King WebSite.
Jack Nicholson (1937 to )
Jack Nicholsosn is an American film actor and director, whose on-screen persona is usually that of an outgoing, unconventional character, often with a sinister side to him. He was born in Neptune, New Jersey. After making his movie debut in The Cry Baby Killer (1958) and appearing in several other films, including Little Shop of Horrors (1960), Nicholson gained national attention in Easy Rider (1969). He subsequently appeared in Five Easy Pieces (1970), Carnal Knowledge (1971), Chinatown (1974), The Shining (1980), Reds (1981), Prizzi's Honor (1985), Heartburn (1986), The Witches of Eastwick (1987), Ironweed (1987), Batman (1989), Hoffa (1992), A Few Good Men (1992) and As Good As It Gets (1997), among others. He won an Academy Award as best actor for One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest (1975) and as best supporting actor for Terms of Endearment (1983). Nicholson produced Drive, He Said (1971), and directed Goin' South (1978) and The Two Jakes (1990), in which he also appeared. He has also written screenplays for several films.,+Jack - Jack Nicholson Internet Movie Database (IMDb) Entry.
Cast & Crew - Full Cast and Credit Details.
There are many websites on the internet offering multimedia from 'The Shining'. What follows is a list of the best places to get it: - Kubrick Multimedia Film Guide for 'The Shining'. - High Quality Images from 'The Shining'. - High Quality Images from behind the scenes of 'The Shining'. - Series of .mp3 Sound Clips. - Series of .wav Sound Clips. - 'The Shining' soundtrack in streaming .asf files. - Video Clip of Hallorann and Danny Talking. (Real Media) - Video Clip of Danny Coming Across the Grady Twins. (Real Media) - Video Clip of "Gimme The Bat!" Scene. (Real Media) - Video Clip from the Making of Documentary. (Real Media) - 'The Shining' Trailer. (Real Media) - 'The Shining' Trailer. (Movie)
Computer Game
There has never been an official computer game of 'The Shining', however there is available a Duke Nukem map of the Overlook hotel on the internet. Several other maps are planned for other games.

http:/ - The Virtual Overlook, where you can download the Duke Nukem map.
Different Versions
There are three key versions of 'The Shining'. First there was the book written by Stephen King in 1976, then Stanley Kubrick made a film of the book in 1980 and finaly Stephen King made a TV mini series in 1990. Here however the focus is on Stanley Kubrick's film.
The version of the film I recommend you get is the American DVD. It has the trailer, documentary and is the full American cinema release.
'The Shining' originally had an extended ending where Stuart Ullman goes and visits Wendy and Danny in hospital. However this was cut after a New York preview. It may of been shown for a couple of days in selected cinema's when first released. Stanley Kubrick cut the scene because it was confusing and obscure, and the film worked much better without it. Stanley Kubrick felt it was at the wrong pace and tenor for the film, and not nearly as effective as the very tightly cut version.
When 'The Shining' was released in Europe Stanley Kubrick cut the film again, making it approximately 20 minutes shorter. This version is 'tighter' than the American and has a more commercial feel to it. Personally I don't think there's much to choose between the two cuts, but the American version goes into more detail and I prefer it for that simple reason.
There was an article in the Monthly Film Bulletin called 'Shine On...and Out' which details the changes, which is available on the internet.
If you get the American DVD you can always fast forward through the bits that are only in the American version and watch it in the European version. - Monthly Film Bulletin 'Shine On...and Out'.
'The Shining' was filmed in 1978 at Elstree Studios, in London England. It was released in 1980. There is an interesting article available from Elstree studios about filming 'The Shining'. Which available on the internet. - Article from Elstree Studios about 'The Shining'.
'The Shining' screenplay was written by Stanley Kubrick and Diane Johnson after Stephen King was rejected by Stanley Kubrick for not being up to the job. An interesting interview with Diane Johnson is available on the internet.
Aspect Ratio
The film was shot to be shown at 1:1.85 in the theatre, but Stanley Kubrick shot it full frame in the camera because he wanted to leave open the option of releasing it that way on video. Stanley Kubrick strongly disliked movies being masked off on the TV screen after his experience of 2001, when the film ended up looking very small.
That is the standard practice: a 35mm film shot on spherical as opposed to anamorphic lenses. It is then masked off at a very late stage in the labs when the final prints are being made. 'The Shining' looks incomparably better on the big screen projected correctly, at the 1:1.85 ratio, as Stanley Kubrick intended.
What Others Think
At the time 'The Shining' wasn't particularly well received. Everyone seemed to be expecting a 'slasher' horror film. Thus they were disappointed at the time. It got mixed reviews from critics as well but seems to have grown to become a much more respected film 20 years on at the turn of the century.
'The Shining' seemed to be the first 'cerebral' horror film. A film which made you think instead of a film which simply used tactic's to make you jump. People found this hard to grapple with.
There are a few reviews of 'The Shining' available on the internet from 'The Kubrick Site' as well as essays on theorys and discussion. - Excerpts From the New Yorker Review of 'The Shining' By Pauline Kael. - 'The Family Of Man' By Bill Blakemore. - Stanley Kubrick's Horror Show By Jack Kroll. - Reappraising Kubrick's The Shining By Brian Siano. - "I am sorry to differ with you, sir:" Thoughts On Reading Kubrick's The Shining By Kian Bergstrom. - Kubrick, King, and the Ultimate Scare Tactic By Michael Dare. - The Shining and Transcendence By Tim Fulmer & Rod Munday.
Vivian Kubrick, daughter of Stanley Kubrick made a documentary entitled 'The making of 'The Shining''. The documentary was originally recorded for use on BBC 2's art program, 'Arena'. It was first shown in the early 1980's and was re-shown on BBC 2 in 1999 after Stanley Kubrick's death, as a tribute along with some of his other works.
Vivian Kubrick shot nearly 28 hours of footage which was cut down to just approximately 25 minutes. A forthcoming Stanley Kubrick documentary by Jan Harlan will probably be using some of the cut footage.
Vivian Kubrick wanted to make a documentary, however Stanley Kubrick saw it as more of an opportunity to promote 'The Shining' and had final say over the final cut. So the final cut of the documentary had extra clip's from the film at the expense of some behind the scenes footage.
The documentary is included on the DVD release of 'The Shining' and offers an excellent insight into the film. The new DVD version also hasa commentary by Vivian Kubrick.
A small website which includes audio samples and pictures from the documentary is available on the internet. - Small WebSite about the documentary. - Video Clip from the Making of Documentary.

A soundtrack for 'The Shining' was released around the time of the film. However it was only in America and was for a short period before it was recalled. It was never re-released and the only explanation I have ever heard for it's withdrawal was due to legal issues.
A CD has recently been released called 'Dr. Strangelove - Music from the films of Stanley Kubrick' which has the opening track from the original soundtrack. Which is 'The Shining (Main Title)' by Wendy Carlos and Rachel Elkind. However they are not the original songs but recreations of the originals on the album.
Wendy Carlos and Rachel Elkind also did the music for 'The Shining' trailer. Wendy Carlos’s music also features in the making of documentary. The music used is Valse Triste by Sibelius, re-worked electronically by Wendy Carlos, it was a very early test track for possible music to be used in ‘The Shining’ that Stanley Kubrick rejected.
A pirate Japanese CD of the original soundtrack is available, but only through collectors fairs and through special music finding services. Screen Archives have copies for sale at $28.
If you would like to listen to the soundtrack I advise you go on Napster or similar and download .mp3s of the soundtrack.
An excellent website with information and Real Audio clips of 'The Shining' soundtrack is available on the internet.
'The Shining' soundtrack is also available in .asf streaming audio files, a link is available below.
There is an interview on the internet with Gordon Stainforth who was assistant editor and music editor for 'The Shining'. He talks about several things including a new mix of the soundtrack Warner Brothers are doing for a re-release of 'The Shining'. - 'The Shining' soundtrack in streaming .asf files. - Screen Archives WebSite. - The Official Wendy Carlos WebSite. - 'The Shining' Soundtrack WebSite. - Napster WebSite. - Interview With Gordon Stainforth.
News and Discussion Groups
If your interested in meeting people who also like 'The Shining' and would like to hear their opinions or post questions etc I advise you go to the 'The Shining Discussion Forum'.
Also another place for discussion on 'The Shining' is the Alt.Movies.Kubrick newsgroup, however this is mainly focused on Stanley Kubrick himself. - 'The Shining' Discussion Board. - Information on alt.movies.kubrick.
What it all Means?
If you take 'The Shining' at face value it appears to be an ornate horror film. However if you take a deeper look your find it goes a lot deeper than just that. A lot, lot deeper.
There are several main views on 'The Shining', the first and most obvious is that the film is about a man who goes mad and attacks his family. You can see this as the breakdown of the family unit. Also you can watch the film and think over the fact that the Overlook hotel is a living entity. 'The Shining' can also represent how America has lost its way. 'The Shining' can be seen as a film about racism in America, with Dick Hallorann, the only man to be killed and referred to as a 'nigger' by Mr Grady. 'The Shining' could also be seen as a film representing the genocide of Indians in America. Bill Blakemore's essay 'The Family of Man' on the subject brings a whole new meaning to 'The Shining'. - The Shining and Transcendence By Tim Fulmer & Rod Munday. - 'The Family Of Man' By Bill Blakemore.
There are several so-called mistakes in 'The Shining'. Wendy's cigarette is constantly changing length in some scenes. Also the design on the carpet flips around in a change of shots when a ball runs up to Danny. Dick Hallorann also goes to open the freezer in the kitchen with one had and then it's opened with the other when the shot cuts from outside to inside the freezer. However it's not entirely clear if they are mistakes or put there to confuse us and make us feel uneasy. By these small things being in the film they often make us feel like there is something wrong (which there is) without knowing why. Not knowing that is until you've watched the film several times and noticed these things.
Did You Know?
The inspiration for the title of the book and thus film and mini series was taken from the chorus of the song 'Instant Karma', "We all shine on..."
A fire during the filming of 'The Shining' caused 1.25 million pounds worth of damage but luckily no one was hurt and the particular piece of set was no longer needed. But approximately a 100 un-replaceable photo's from Warner Brothers collection were lost.
The Grady Twins (sisters) are a reference to Diane Arbus's photo 'Identical twins'. As Stanley Kubrick was a friend of the photographer in the New York Bronx.
In the shot where Wendy and Danny drive away you can see the edge of the set for 'The Empire Strikes Back' which was being filmed at the same time in Elstree studios.
In the final scene's of 'Blade Runner' some footage originally shot for 'The Shining' is used. It is the gods eye view footage of the forest below.
Stanley Kubrick originally wanted to have the hedge maze come alive with animals, as in the book. However special effects were unable to produce good enough results for him so he opted for a straight forward maze.
Scatman Crothers who played Dick Hallorann was taken on after Jack Nicholson recommended him after he was in 'One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest' with him.
Footage containing a scene with Shelly Duval snorting something (presumably drugs) was cut from the making of documentary.
Originally Stephen King was employed to help co-write the film script of 'The Shining' however he was soon dropped as Stanley Kubrick is said to of found him not up to the job.
Stephen King hated the final Stanley Kubrick film version of his book and is said to of disliked Stanley Kubrick. It is reported that Stanley Kubrick used to phone Stephen King up during filming and ask him questions like “Do you believe in God?” at 7:00 in the morning.
The book was written by Stephen King as a semi autobiography, as he too was once an alcoholic writer.
The line “Here's Johnny!” was adlibbed at the time by Jack Nicholson.
The scene where Jack Nicholson tells Wendy “… Whenever I'm in here, and you hear me typing, whether you don't hear me typing, whatever the fuck you hear me doing in here, when I'm in here, that means that I am working. That means …” was written by Jack Nicholson on set as he once said something similar to an ex wife when he was trying to write a script in the evenings after working on films during the day.
The manuscript which Wendy flick's through which reads “All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy.” Was hand typed. - 'Identical Twins' photo by Diane Arbus.
Spoofs and Parodies
There are spoofs and parodies of 'The Shining' in many films, adverts and tv shows. Most notably recently in 'The Simpsons' Tree House of Horrors IV, where half a show was devoted to spoofing 'The Shining'.
'MAD Magazine' also did a comic strip parodie of 'The Shining' recently. - MAD Magazine's The Shiner.
An excellent FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) is available over the internet which goes into some depth into the film which I highly recommend you read as well. It has many excellent insights and has sections written by the assistant editor and music editor of 'The Shining', Gordon Stainforth. It is available over the internet from 'The Kubrick Site'. - The Shining FAQ. - Gordon Stainforth's WebSite
Anything Wrong?
If there is anything wrong or amiss here. In other words, broken links, miss information lack of credit etc. Or you have any comments or questions then please email me.
If you wish to link to this site then please do so, use the banner if possible. If you'd like the .html code to link to me I can email it to you. If you'd like to quote from the site, feel free to. Just please put the appropriate credit, with a link.

(C) Copyright Stuart Gray

Thanks to Gordon Stainforth