Long before the movie's May 1980 release, horror maestro Stephen King talks about Kubrick's vision for THE SHINING.
King's historic bedeviling of Kubrick has always been an interesting study. On the one hand King is very a fine author with chops that are actually pretty amazing, well beyond the normal public consideration of him as a pulp/yarn guy. On the other hand we have Stanley, who you might call the reigning supra-genius of cinema.
When these forces met, the prize definitely went to Kubrick. His filmic vision of THE SHINING exceeded King's in every way. It's understandable that King was squeamish about his words being altered. However, some of that was purely ego. Hey, we're all human, right?
And let's face it: No matter how good a person is at one thing, it doesn't necessarily transfer to other things. In this case, Kubrick's mastery of film narrative correctly steered him away from King's corny animated hedges (that were mostly impossible to do correctly with practical effects, anyway) and into something so purely cinematic and subconsciously terrifying that THE SHINING and its imagery will never be forgotten.
King was fighting outside his weight when he picked a battle with Kubrick. Again, he's a very fine writer and from all accounts a really cool guy. But sometimes there are brighter suns about. There just are.
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