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Movie Critic review: The Shining (1980) Part Three


Kubricks Made Easy
 
On seeing The Shining first time, it is hard to seat it snugly in your memory as a horror movie. It's different. There is no obvious horror movie technique. No pop ups. No mutilations, No beheadings. Ghosts are not transparent. Rather they are flesh-and-blood human beings in a ghostly stage of their lives. An idea which is scarier upon rethinking. Even the most popular scare tactic of resolving an almost unavoidable harm in the last second and having everyone go: ah...with relief, but out of nowhere a hand suddenly shoots up to grab someone. Not even this. Actually kubrick treats differently scenes thatare potentially fraught with suspense in a way that makes sure you are aware of all angles and therefore have no reason to get startled. Maybe later, when you sit to watch it the second time! ( I bet you cannot do that alone with no empty Coke bottle by your side to save you the awkward trip to the bathroom!). Kubrick does not seem concerned about attainable momentary scare or, let me call it, cheap scare!


Some viewers might run such a dialogue:
 - Did you see The Shining?
 - It is not scary!
 - You were not watching attentively.. or you need to see it again.
 - I can't pay twice for the one scare that I will likely miss!

This is what you get from watching The Shining. Lots of unanswered questions. As a result of the unconventional way of cinematically handling the novel, Kubrick created a lot of fuss by his adaptation. Hundreds of newspaper columns, websites, interest groups and forums are trying to understand the meaning of Kubrick's cinematic version (actually it is a disversion) of Stephen King's novel, The Shining.
Some think of it as tackling the theme of family disintegration as obvious an explanation as may be. Others see it as pointing to racism in America because the black cook Halloran was the only person in the movie who gets brutally killed!
I would love to have someone elaborate on the role of the child Danny and the Chef Halloran in conveying the concept of "Shining".
Some see the abundance of bits and pieces of native American culture scattered all over most frames as a reference to how America was built. On floods of blood. The recurrent motif of the blood-flooded elevator and the fact that the hotel itself was build on an Indian burial site, on human resistance aborted when it was being built. Also look at the hotel name: The Overlook! Not just because it was build on the heights!
(Please read the excellent essay: 'The Family Of Man' By Bill Blakemore. http://www.visual-memory.co.uk/amk/doc/0052.html).
Yet, the American pop culture to which the few brilliant works of Kubrick were deservedly added, has other explanations to Kubrick's ways that are much fun and bizarre than the rantings of intellectuals or movie critics.
OK. Prepare for this!
Stanley Kubrick was associated with the Free Masons or with some would-be powers of the future and for a certain breach of his agreement with these unknown powers of the future he was sent a secret weapon that killed him in his sleep. Well, yeah. In fact Stan died in his sleep in 1999. Good for him!


This is one bizarre story but apparently a subsidiary of the much-perfected and bewildering story that goes: (I am telling it my own way) Kubrick had aligned himself with some government agency that had him shoot somewhere in the States the 'fake' landing of American astronauts on the moon- Apollo 11, 1969. They probably liked the way he did his avantgarde movie '2001: Space Odyssey' which he made in 1969!
The reasons? It was the Cold War era and the USA had to prove to the  Soviets that they were so technologically advanced that they could beat the Russians in the War if it were to turn hot. Kubrick was told to shut his mouth, which was probably an unnecessary instruction because he was already... a recluse!

                         

For some reason (being a creative mind is one) Kubrick made The Shining the way it is. An enigma. A plethora of codes sprinkled in almost every frame. Codes that we can, remotely, guess what they referred to but with no certainty. He made these codes because he had a popular message to convey to his viewers. To crack the codes and decipher his message you will be directed to where you can park your cart and have your credit card ready.
In exchange, you will receive a CD of the (alleged) message! Or you can pay me 50% of the charge and get these cool factoids:
-1- Americans did not walk on the moon. They had to say they did. Evidence? a scripted scene from the genius who made the Odyssy movie.
-2- The Russians believed the story. Which means they too did not have the tech advance to occupy second seat in the world scene.
-3- The astronauts became recluse not because of the spatial experience but because of working with Kubrick!
-4- Kubrick was in fact a double agent. Upon finding this out, the 'other' government decided to kill him by sending him some lethal rays that eternalized his dreams for that night!

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