“The Shining” is a searing piece of work, a film that sears itself on your emotions, imagination, and senses. Halloran’s line of “events leaving traces of themselves behind” sets up the rest of the film in a way that, even after a second viewing, still crawls up behind you and sodomizes your expectations. Torrance’s descent into madness spills over into reality and our earlier suspicion of the whole family, being open to the paranormal – seeing ‘dead’ people’ – is confirmed. Danny Lloyd’s character does see into the past and present, into the hidden motives of his father, Shelley Duvall’s does communicate with her son telepathically. Or not? We never know.
All the classic hallmarks of Kubrick’s style are present: poetic slow pans, the juxtaposition of serene classical music against scenes of destruction of humans, and the haunting experimental music that brings tension and suspense to a rapid boil.