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Showing 1-10 of 2,005 reviews(Verified Purchases). See all 2,633 reviews
on February 24, 2017
A classic Kubrick thriller with an all-star cast. What more needs be said for true greatness? This one scared the pants off lots of people when it was released. I was a young man living in Cleveland then. "Rocky Horror" at midnight on Saturday at the Heights Art theater was all the rage- great audience participation. Oh wait, I'd better get off the nostalgia train. I've seen "2001' and "Full Metal Jacket", too. Liked them both. I'm not a film critic, but I think Stanley & Co. know their stuff.
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on October 27, 2013
Horror fans know that this is one of the greatest horror films of all time...often ranked number one, so I'm not going to do this movie the injustice of trying to review it. There aren't to many extras on this blu-ray, but it's the best looking and sounding version of The Shining that I've seen. For less than $10, you can't beat it.

On a side note...my favorite thing about this purchase: I have been a fan of the movie for many many years, but had never read the book. After reading the book I got obsessed with wanting to see the movie on blu-ray. The last version I purchased was in standard format on DVD. After killing a Saturday afternoon trying to locate one around Tulsa, I gave up and ordered a copy on Amazon. I was happy because of the price, but felt defeated because I had had my heart set on watching it that night. But within minutes I got an email from Amazon letting me know that I could watch the HD version online instantly for no additional cost! Needless to say, I was stoked. It's the little things...
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on August 23, 2013
One of the most controversial movies in Stanley Kubrick's lexicon, The Shining polarizes fans of the book and film a great deal. It is, to say the least, not very true to the original novel by Stephen King, and becomes a totally different story unique to this version. So how is it as a movie?
It is a masterpiece. Kubrick is one of the greatest film makers of all time with such classics as 2001, Dr. Strangelove and A Clockwork Orange under his belt. The Shining is probably his most accessible movie for a general audience. I first saw this film when I was 13, and even then I was aware it was something special. That and I always wondered just what the movie playing during the drive in scene from Twister was. What Kubrick does is rather than simply adapt King's novel verbatim, he tweaks it to make it something uniquely his own, only using King's novel as inspiration for his original take on the story. This will understandably upset a great deal many people. I am a King fan myself, and have enjoyed many of his books and film adaptations. But tweaking a story can improve it in certain ways. The film alterations of The Shawshank Redemption have since become signature parts of the story, and that film is universally loved. The Shining should receive a similar reception.
Jack Nicholson delivers one of his signature performances in this film as the slowly unhinging Jack Torrance, an oddly sympathetic but thoroughly frightening villain. Ol Jack always was a trooper with acting, creating a variety of colorful characters from One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest to Five Easy Pieces. Here, he delivers one of his more crazy performances and it is a treat to watch. The rest of the cast, Duvall, Crothers and Lloyd, do very nicely. Lloyd especially delivers a turnout performance as Jack's frightened son in probably the best performance by a child in a horror film.
One of the most interesting parts about the story (book and film) is the setting. Isolating the characters was always effective in horror stories such as Alien and The Thing. Like the latter, this film uses the cold and snow to cut off the characters from just walking out the door. It really makes the hotel become not a beautiful mansion, but a spooky maze from which there is no escape. The choice of hotel for both the interior and exterior was just fabulous, and allows for many great images to be created on the movie. And it is just perfect for building atmosphere.
The film varies in just how it creates fear. First, it is fear by suggestion, with creepy images and dark shadows that slowly build a sense of dream. One of the creepiest moments in the film is when the young Danny is lured into room 237 whilst playing in the halls of the hotel. This scene boasts a minimalist score, some oddly symmetrical images that are somehow very unsettling, and it draws out the scene to the point that it is almost torture. Not until the final third does Jack become the mad axe man, and the film dispenses with its sense of dread and opens the floodgates into total terror. It is this section of the film that most people remember, and it is not hard to see why as it is very well executed. However, the two thirds before that are also something to see. Who knew a kid looking down a hallway could look so damn creepy?
The two disc DVD delivers the good with a host of features, including the classic trailer for the film and the original documentary from its original release date. Not a lot of new material, and that is kind of sad, but still great stuff.
If you are a Stephen King fan, just remember this. This is not a Stephen King movie. It is a Stanley Kubrick movie. Don't put it in with the book, and view it on its own merits. If you are able to do that, you are in for one of the best horror films ever made.
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on June 17, 2017
One of the top classic horror movies of all time, certainly got to be in anybody's top ten. One of the few movies ever that was almost as good as the book. Timeless classic Jack Nicholson. I first saw it in the theater when I was 15 and it actually gave me nightmares. Don't watch this if you're really sensitive.
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on December 1, 2016
When I went to watch it on Halloween I couldn't believe that I didn't have it on my DVR! Being way to lazy to dig through DVD boxes in the garage, I just bought the instant video version. So convenient!!! The Shining is full of brilliant performances and the kind of slow burning suspense that is lacking in most horror/thriller movies. I'm a Jack Nicholson fan anyway and this is hands-down my favorite of his performances. Shelly Duval is great too, especially when considering the stories that have come out about how director Kubrick "terrorized" her throughout filming. If you're already a fan, instant video is a great way to make sure you have easy access to watch the film whenever the mood strikes. If you've never seen it, this is a MUST SEE for every film lover.
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on December 20, 2015
What can I say... A great horror story based on Steven King's book, although directed by Stanley Kubrik. Jack Nicholson plays the part of a winter caretaker at a secluded Colorado hotel known as "The Overlook". After Jack and his family settle in to the hotel, Jack begins to slowly change into a mad man. Jack's son (Danny) has a special power (shining) that enables him to see visions. Jack becomes "the caretaker" much like one of the previous caretakers (Grady) that ran a muck and killed his family. One can only guess that the hotel tapped into Jack since he was a recovering alcoholic, and he was probably in a weak state of mind. Or perhaps it was Danny who woke the hotel up once again with his strong powers of "shining". Either way, I love this movie. It's one of my top 10 favorites of all time. If by some slim chance you've never seen it, then you're in for a treat. Just don't expect a slasher film. This is more of a psychological thriller with some great placed surprises.
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on October 16, 2014
If you don't like this movie, you simply don't like scary films. It is scary in so many ways. This is my favorite Jack performance and Shelley Duval plays the perfect terrified woman. It is creepy, convincing, beautifully shot, and just plain fun to watch.

If you have not seen it shame on you. If you have seen it...watching it on Blue Ray is a nice experience.

All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy...
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on July 23, 2016
It's a little difficult for me to rate a Kubrick film with anything less than five stars - except for "A Clockwork Orange" - which I really hate despite its great stylistic innovations because of its sickeningly sadistic violence - especially toward two women characters - violence which I won't detail here because it's so repulsive. "Barry Lyndon" was a dud, too, as far as I'm concerned. My current favorites are his final one,"Eyes Wide Shut," and this one, "The Shining."
This is a film that - even more so than the best of Hitchcock's later widescreen films like "North by Northwest" and "Vertigo" - takes the viewer directly into the places and spaces in which the dramaticevents are happening. It is also one of those films in which the relatively laid-back culture the late 1970's in the U.S. is on full display. I've never liked Jack Nicholson, for reasons irrelevant to this review, but - believe me - if any film lover ever doubted that a 70's era male leading man with a reputation for craziness was perfectly cast in a role, this one which was made for Nicholson, and it shows conclusively that he can really act.

He's in a kind scene-stealing conflict with Shelley Duval and the young child actor who plays this couple's son as to who "owns" this movie. This is a movie classic by any standard - no matter what Stephen King says about how Kubrick butchered his book.

Try to get the DVD special edition, available on Amazon, with plenty of backstory and commentary - this was one of the first films - maybe THE first major motion picture - in which the recently invented steadycam was used - and Kubrick uses it with great audience effect.. One DVD edition has a commentary by the fellow who claims to have invented the steadycam. In one of his trivia tidbits during his commentary, he tells the viewer that when the Shelley Duval character and her boy child run out of the studio replica of a real hotel in Oregon custom built in a British studio for this film, .into a major in-studio "snowstorm," the "snow" on the ground is really several hundred tons of salt trucked in from a salt mine in Devon, England.
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on January 13, 2016
My husband was shocked to hear I had never seen this movie. I loved it! Jack Nicholson is great in this. Even though I guessed ahead of time weird things that were going g to happen it just made it better. Annoys the carp outing my husband but I can do that with a lot of movies. This kept me on the edge of my seat. Wish only that I could have seen it again and earlier in life. Brilliant.
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on August 19, 2016
Powerful and scary.... here's Johnny!

All work and no play make Jack a dull boy. All work and no play make Jack a dull boy. All work and no play make Jack a dull boy. All work and no play make Jack a dull boy. All work and no play make Jack a dull boy. All work and no play make Jack a dull boy. All work and no play make Jack a dull boy. All work and no play make Jack a dull boy. All work and no play make Jack a dull boy. All work and no play make Jack a dull boy. All work and no play make Jack a dull boy. All work and no play make Jack a dull boy. All work and no play make Jack a dull boy. All work and no play make Jack a dull boy. All work and no play make Jack a dull boy. All work and no play make Jack a dull boy.

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