The Genius of Stanley Kubrick

1336 Words6 Pages
The Genius of Stanley Kubrick Many movie directors have mastered a genre or two. Wes Craven and John Carpenter are two of the horror film legends. Alfred Hitchcock is probably one of the five greatest directors of all time, with thrillers being his primary claim to fame. George Lucas has been the reigning king of science fiction ever since the release of Star Wars. John Ford is arguably the premier director of westerns. In my opinion, however, Stanley Kubrick may be the person who mastered more genres than any other director. Kubrick was a movie-making genius, much like Steven Spielberg. Anyone you meet on the street can probably name five Spielberg movies. Not many people, however, are aware that Stanley Kubrick was the director of The Shining, Full Metal Jacket, A Clockwork Orange, 2001: A Space Odyssey, Spartacus, Dr. Strangelove, and eleven other movies. For my money, The Shining is the greatest horror film ever made. The setting is a real hotel in an isolated area of Colorado. The movie starred Jack Nicholson and Shelly Duvall. The hotel is completely abandoned except for a man, his wife, and their young son. The movie is a master-piece. Under Kubrick's direction, Jack Nicholson gives the greatest performance of his career. The Shining will scare the hell out of anyone. In one scene the boy discovers the word "murder" written on a wall. He, however, views the word on a mirror, and thus reads it in reverse as "redrum". He then proceeds to mutter the word "redrum" in an eerie manner at various times throughout the movie. The crazed character played by Nicholson chases his son through a maze of tall shrub hedges during a blizzard. The scene is incredible and so is the entire movie. Any fan of horror and/or Jack Nicholson, who has not seen this movie, should rent it immediately. Amazingly, The Shining is the only horror film that Stanley Kubrick made during his forty-nine year career. In my opinion, it is the best of its genre, even better than Hitchcock's Psycho. Among the ten greatest war movies of all time, I would include Saving Private Ryan, The Bridge on The River Kwai, Platoon, and Apocalypse Now. Stanley Kubrick's Full Metal Jacket also belongs on this list. No other movie has depicted boot camp the way Kubrick did in this 1987 film. The hair on my arm was literally standing up by the time the movie had completed the segment dealing with boot camp.
Open Document