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Making 'The Shining' (1980)

TV Movie  -   -  Documentary | Short  -  1980 (West Germany)
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A look behind the scenes during the making of 'Stanley Kubrick (I)''s The Shining (1980).

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Cast

Credited cast:
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Danny Lloyd ...
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Gert Kubrick ...
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Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
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Vivian Kubrick ...
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Storyline

A look behind the scenes during the making of 'Stanley Kubrick (I)''s The Shining (1980).

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Documentary | Short

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1980 (West Germany)  »

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Did You Know?

Trivia

This documentary can be found on the 2-Disc Special Edition DVD of The Shining (1980), released in 2007. See more »

Quotes

Stanley's Mom: And why is the script in multi-coloured pages? Anything?
Stanley Kubrick: Each time we make a new version, at first you get very methodical - each time you make a new version, you put a different colour in. After a while, you're lucky if people get copies of the changes.
Jack Nicholson: It's so that you start with white, then you go to blue, then pink, then green, then yellow.
Stanley's Mom: But I just wondered...
Stanley Kubrick: But what happens is...
Jack Nicholson: It's so that when everybody's got their script out, you can look right over and know if they've got the ...
[...]
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Connections

Features The Shining (1980) See more »

Soundtracks

The Rite of Spring
(uncredited)
Written by Igor Stravinsky
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User Reviews

 
definitely not a 'making of' to skip over on your VHS/DVD
24 August 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

In maybe one of a few rare glimpses on screen (or even off), Stanley Kubrick is on film, behind the scenes, making a movie. It is one of the shames of cinema that there isn't more footage of him, or even in this half hour documentary he isn't interviewed. But his presence is fascinating all the same, and when he is shown directing he is what has been perceived as for decades- creative, different, controlling, authoritative, and somehow generous as a director. There's one scene that's rather interesting where Kubrick's mother is sitting with his son and Jack Nicholson having a small conversation; it's admitted that there isn't a finished script, that new pages come every day for the actors. The interaction between the people in this scene, and others, makes this worthwhile.

I've yet to see the DVD version so I can't comment on Vivian Kubrick's commentary track (the director's daughter, who was perfectly 'cute as Heywood Floyd's daughter in 2001). But what she presents for us is candid, and usually very insightful. An interview with Nicholson, who's sound-bites are choice, and wise as well when he says, "I want to be out of control as an actor...otherwise it will predictably be MY work, and that's no fun." But there is also a heartfelt interview with Scatman Crothers, who came out of filming in the arduous conditions of Kubrick's perfectionism (there were dozens and dozens of takes that Crothers had to give, according to trivia). There is a not too shabby interview with Danny Lloyd, who played the boy in the film. And Shelly Duvall, who does lay it as straight as possible about what it was like to work with the director; the scene that is captured over Kubrick's shoulder (of an argument between actor and director) is a little uncomfortable, but in the end one can see why Kubrick wanted it the way he did for the finished film.

Usually 'making-of' documentaries are hit or miss, depending on the films of course; one would prefer an audio commentary, or a long interview with the filmmaker about the making of the film. But as the Shining has neither of these - and is the only place to fins unadulterated footage of the iconoclast and his cast at work on screen and off (if you discount the Criterion DVD release of Spartacus and a recent release of Dr. Strangelove) - it's well worth the half hour; the added music by Carlos is a nice touch.


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