Stephen King wrote The Shining in 1977, and Stanley Kubrick's film adaptation came out 33 years ago, but from all of the Shining-related activity going on, you'd think the spooky tale about a horrible winter at the Overlook Hotel was much more recent. First, close to home, a new documentary that explores theories about the movie's hidden meanings premieres this weekend at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. Rodney Ascher, the director of Room 237, interviewed fans and scholars in an attempt to deconstruct the 1980 film, which starred Jack Nicholson and Houston native Shelly Duvall.

Room 237
April 12, 8:45 p.m.; April 13, 6 p.m. and 8 p.m.; April 14, 4 pm and 6 p.m.
$9; $7 seniors & students
Museum of Fine Arts, Houston
1001 Bissonnet St
713-639-7300
mfah.org

In conjunction with the documentary, the museum is screening The Shining tonight and Sunday. Hailed by some as a horror classic, the movie is dismissed by others as one of Kubrick's less successful works. Count King among those who didn't much care for it. Loosely based on the novel, the film centers on Jack Torrance, a writer played by Nicholson, who is pushed to violent insanity after he moves his family into an isolated hotel to act as caretaker during the winter off-season.  The couple's young son, played by Danny Lloyd, is psychic and has horrible visions of the hotel's past.

If you haven't seen it, this is your chance to experience The Shining on the big screen. Think of it as preparation for the upcoming movie prequel. Deadline.com reported yesterday that Glen Mazzara, until recently the executive producer of AMC's Walking Dead zombie series, is in talks to write The Overlook Hotel for Warner Bros. Details are scarce, but the movie presumedly would be set at the hotel before the fateful snowbound winter when the Torrances moved in.

As if that isn't enough, King has written a sequel to the novel, scheduled for release in September. Doctor Sleep focuses on the adult Danny Torrance, the son of the characters played by Nicholson and Duvall. "Haunted by the inhabitants of the Overlook Hotel where he spent one horrific childhood year," the synopsis reads, "Dan has been drifting for decades, desperate to shed his father’s legacy of despair, alcoholism, and violence."

 

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