I am very happy that I revisited this story. In my opinion this is one of Mr. King’s great works. I wish I would have taken the time read it again before reading Dr. Sleep, though I think Dr. Sleep stands on its own.
I was amazed at how much the movie had seeped in to my memory of the book. I respect Kubrick’s version, it’s hard to argue with the visual impact of the maze and “all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy” was brilliant. I would love to see it re-done closer to book and I think with today’s special effects and the right casting it would stand up to Kubrick’s version.
As I mentioned in my last post as with most of Mr. Kings books there are no hero’s in this book. Almost all the main characters are heroic at times but they are all human, They all have their faults and their strengths.
The closest thing to a hero is Danny whose biggest fault is that he is only 5 and dealing with things no five year old should have to deal with. Even before they get to the overlook he is dealing being tapped into adult emotions with no capacity to understand or deal with them.
There is really when you look at it no real villains either. Some people would point to Jack Torrance but when you look at it he is just a deeply flawed man dealing with alcoholism and really trying to do the right thing.
I guess if you really had to find a bad guy it would be the Overlook itself but it really didn’t have the power to do much of anything without someone with “The Shine” to power it.
We haven’t even talked about the complex characters of Wendy and Dick and all their failings and triumphs.
Part of the brilliance of this book is isolating the characters so we could really dig into them and there relationships. The pressure of their isolation and the “ghosts” in the overlook made the perfect setting to bring them to the surface.
I may come back to this one, there is so much going on here and we have Dr Sleep to look forward to.
For now on the Night Shift – to be honest I’m not a big fan of short stories but I’ll dig in and let you know my thoughts as I go along.