main index




Topical Tropes

Other Categories

TV Tropes Org
Kickstarter Message
TV Tropes Needs Your Help
Big things are happening on TV Tropes! New admins, new designs, fewer ads, mobile versions, beta testing opportunities, thematic discovery engine, fun trope tools and toys, and much more - Learn how to help here and discuss here.
View Kickstarter Project
YMMV: The Shining
  • Adaptation Displacement: None of the iconic scenes from the film (the ghosts of the girls, the blood in the elevator, "All work and no play...", the "Here's Johnny!" line) are in the book.
    • An interesting case is the hedge maze, which plays a pivotal role in the movie. In the book, it is a topiary garden which comes to life, sort of.
    • In addition to the "Here's Johnny!" line, Jack attacking his family with an axe has become iconic in its own right. It was a croquet mallet in the book.
  • Alternate Character Interpretation: The movie has this in spades.
  • Big Lipped Alligator Moment: The "dog costume" scene in the movie. It actually supposed to be a reference to Overlook's original hotel manager Horace Derwent and his lover Roger, who have quite creepy scenes concerning their relationship in the book. But since Kubrick's version didn't even bother to explain who the characters were, it becomes a completely random moment.
    • Which makes it Narm for some, an epic Mind Screw for others.
  • Crazy Awesome: Come on, how can you not love insane Jack Torrance? Aside from him, you know, being an abusive Alcoholic Parent who broke his own son's arm.
  • Creepy Awesome: See above.
  • Cult Classic: Especially when it was first released and was one of the better Stephen King films.
  • Death of the Author: There are countless interpretations of what the movie is about and what happens in it. Kubrick revealed his true intentions in an interview with Michel Ciment, where he says that the ghosts were real, that Grady rescuing Jack from the storeroom was intended as proof that the ghosts were real, that the indications that it's all in the characters' heads are a giant Red Herring and that Jack was a reincarnation of the man who was at the July 4th Ball. For the most part, this interview has been ignored by theorists, either because of this trope, because Kubrick was known to lie and misinform or out of genuine ignorance of its existence.
  • Epileptic Trees: many interpretations of the movie. There's even a 2012 documentary film called Room 237 detailing some of these.
  • "Funny Aneurysm" Moment: The epilogue from the miniseries which shows Danny graduating with honours becomes this,knowing that he'll spend the next 12 years trashing his life.
  • Growing the Beard: Stephen King felt that the point where he wrote Jack Torrence as a sympathetic antagonist was the point where he got better at writing.
  • It Was His Sled: The ending photograph (as well as Jack going crazy in general).
  • Memetic Mutation: HERE'S JOHNNY!
    • And to a lesser extent: "RED RUM! RED RUM!"
    • "All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy."
  • Narm: In context, the infamous "dog costume" scene is supposed to be scary. However, since the movie doesn't bother explaining it, it becomes hilarious.
    • The sudden zoom effect - complete with abrupt music change - certainly adds to this.
    • Wendy's reactions to all the weird stuff going on can be seen as pretty funny.
    • At the end, Jack's moaning is really over-the-top. The shot of his body the next morning looking like he needs to poo really bad can induce tittering as well.
    • The scene where the corridor floods with blood... and then a chair floats by.
    • The look on Jack's face when he sees the lovely naked lady in the tub.
    • Near the end of the Miniseries, Jack rides an elevator into the basement while yelling, "Noooooooo!". What makes it amusing is that he seems to wait to yell until he passes by Wendy and Dick. Seconds later, Danny shows up and tells both that they have to get out, but the way he pronounces "Dick" is amusing.
    • The Creepy Twins at the end of the hallway.
    • The wave of blood.
    • Jack frozen in the hedge maze.
  • Special Effects Failure: Averted - Kubrick originally wanted to adapt the topiary scene, but realized there'd be no way to make it look convincing onscreen. The garden maze stood in for it.
    • Played straight in the miniseries, where the animated topiary animals are shown with utterly hideous CGI. Looks like Kubrick was right.
  • Straw Man Has A Point: When Wendy tells Jack about what happened to Danny in room 237, his reaction is "Are you out of your fucking mind?" and we're supposed to think that he's acting like a complete Jerk Ass. However, before this, Jack was wrongly accused of hurting Danny and never even got to defend himself as Wendy yelled at him and ran away. And now that she's suddenly coming to him for help with a story that sounds pretty ridiculous, it's not that hard to see why Jack wasn't exactly cheery. Not that it justifies the other Jerk Ass things he's done though.
  • Tear Jerker: "Run away. Now. And remember how much I love you."
  • They Changed It, Now It Sucks: The movie for many of the book's fans. Outside of them, in both mainstream audiences and horror movie geeks, it's considered one of the best horror films ever. On the other hand, Stephen King explicitly feels this way about it, mainly because Kubrick took out Jack's redemption. Specifically, King has stated that he thinks the film is a good horror film but a poor adaptation.
  • Vindicated by History: Kubrick's version was panned by critics on release to the point where it won Kubrick a Golden Raspberry Award nomination for Worst Director. Nowadays it is considered one of the masterworks of horror.
  • Weird Al Effect: More people assume "Here's Johnny!" is from this film, rather than The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson.
  • The Woobie: Wendy.
    • Danny himself.
    • Jerkass Woobie: None so much as Jack himself, though. Even though he was the author of so many of his own failures in life, he and his family are trapped in an impossible situation. If not for the malevolent, supernatural hotel, Jack's caretaking job probably would have gone off without a hitch. Keeping his family at the Overlook leads to disaster, but leaving the hotel would have ultimately been almost as bad for them. On the other hand some may find it impossible to have any sympathy for a man who broke his three-year-old son's arm.

TV Tropes by TV Tropes Foundation, LLC is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be available from
Privacy Policy