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How does Stanley Kubrick adapt the horror in Stephen Kings novel The Shining for the visual medium of film? Discuss with close reference to both the novel AND Kubricks film

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Introduction

DA1248 TRANSFORMING TEXTS (2010-2011) ASSESSMENT: Portfolio of work 10. How does Stanley Kubrick adapt the "horror" in Stephen King's novel The Shining for the visual medium of film? Discuss with close reference to both the novel AND Kubrick's film. I decided to compare the novel of "The Shining" by Stephen King to the Film directed by Stanley Kubrick. By reading the book carefully and watching the movie I have noticed that some of the colours used by Stanley Kubrick are different from the ones in the book. I have few examples defining this statement, First of all the red VW in the novel is yellow in the film, The snow-cat in the novel is yellow but Kubrick decides to make it red in the movie. The last example I have noticed is that Jack's yellow ball in the film is Danny's Red ball in the Novel. As we can see the colour yellow and the colour red are inverted and this choice Stanley Kubrik made is not random in fact he uses this sort of unusual reflection of these two colours because mirrors are an important symbol in the movie. ...read more.

Middle

In the movie Wendy is portrayed as an unpolished brunette while in the novel she is described as a smart blonde woman. A very important symbol in the novel is the elevator in the novel and it is used a few times by the Torrance Family. In the movie the family doesn't used it at all. This choice Kubrick makes is due to the fact that he probably doesn't feel that the elevator in the movie gives the same effect that a stair would give. The word "Redrum" is one of the most important symbols in the books and the novel the only thing is that it is portrayed in a different way. In the film "Redrum" is on a door and Wendy sees the word murder in the mirror while in the novel "Redrum" is in a mirror and Danny sees the word murder in a glass clock dome. This choice may be done by Kubrick because written on the door for the viewer it is much more terrifying than written on a mirror. ...read more.

Conclusion

I prefer the movie to the book strangely this is probably because I am not an avid reader and because the book I believe is kind of predictable and most of the things that happen in it did not really scare me. The movie was different it actually gave me some tension in some parts and since it was so different from the book it was unpredictable. I have read on an article that Stephen King was not happy with Stanley Kubrick's work and this is because too many things were changed. It also explained that in Kubrick's film most of the actions committed by the characters or most of the objects or scenery is the reverse of what it is in the book. I have learnt that he uses this reverse technique that I have only noticed with the colours before reading the article because mirrors and reflection is one of the themes of the novel. ( The Shining, 2008. Why did Stanley Kubrick change so much from the novel?.[online] Avaliable at: <http://faqtheshining.blogspot.com/2008/08/why-did-stanley-kubrick-change-so-much.html> [Accessed 10 May 2011]) This choice Kubrick has made is in my opinion fantastic and imaginative and gave the film something more than the book. ...read more.

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