5 Biggest Differences Between The Shining Book and the Movie King Hated Kubrick for
The book is better than the movie. Or is it not?
One of the few people who don't like Stanley Kubrick’s The Shining is the author of the original novel himself, Stephen King. The Shining gained a cult classic status, but Stephen King never changed his mind. The author is convinced that Kubrick did not understand the main idea of the book and misinterpreted the novel on the screen.
Here are a few details that Kubrick completely changed in his adaptation.
1. The Book Hotel Is Way More Mystical
According to King’s book, the Overlook Hotel is often visited by all kinds of evil spirits. It is these ghosts and demons that drive Jack mad in the book. In the movie, all the maddening incidents seem to take place in his own head.
2. Book Jack Works on Another Novel
In both the book and the movie, the main character is a writer having a crisis. But the similarities end there. In the book, Jack abandons the original play and begins writing a story based on the events at the hotel. In the movie, it is totally unclear what Jack is trying to write.
3. The Book Album Plays a More Important Role
In the book, Jack wants to write a book about the hotel because of the scrapbook he's found. The effect of this album on Jack's psyche is the main focus of the source material. In the movie, the album is not as important and is almost irrelevant to the plot, as Jack loses his mind for other reasons.
This difference, though seemingly minor, actually changes the entire nature of the plot, making the movie a psychological thriller instead of a supernatural horror.
4. Book Wendy Is Another Person
Book Wendy is described as a blonde, while the character played by Shelley Duvall is a brunette. In the novel, the main character’s wife has not only a different appearance, but also a different personality.
More importantly, Wendy in the novel is stronger and more independent — she stands up to Jack much more actively and effectively than Wendy in the movie.
5. Book Jack's Death Is Different
In the movie, Jack freezes after failing to catch Danny in the maze. The famous shot of Jack Nicholson freezing has become one of the most famous images in movie history. In the book, Jack doesn't freeze to death, but he is instead lured into the hotel’s boiler room where he gets blown up.