The Shining

Wait, they're going to make a prequel to The Shining? Does Stephen King really need the money that badly? Yes and no. While Warner Brothers, which owns the film rights, has hired the screenwriter who adapted Shutter Island to explain how Jack Nicholson's character went nuts long before reaching the hotel, King is reportedly working on a sequel to his 1977 novel: Doctor Sleep, in which young Danny is now a middle-aged recovering alcoholic trying to protect a 12-year-old girl with special powers from a band of RV-driving ghouls. According to King's website, "The True Knot are quasi-immortal, living off the 'steam' that children with the 'shining' produce when they are slowly tortured to death." So maybe that, too, will become a movie. In the meantime, screening tonight, Stanley Kubrick's slow, eerie 1980 adaptation of The Shining has a primal, fairy-tale quality laced with Oedipal conflict. It matters less if Nicholson's blocked writer is demonically possessed (or Indian-cursed or evil reincarnated or whatever) than that he's simply a bad father—rough and impatient with son Danny, cruelly dismissive of his wife (Shelley Duvall), selfish in his writerly ambitions. A failure at the typewriter, his imagination turns inward, rotting inside its own topiary maze. Movie screens at midnight. (R) BRIAN MILLER

Fri., Aug. 17; Sat., Aug. 18, 2012

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