Ridley Scott Dislikes One Of The Greatest Stephen King Movies Ever

By Kevin C. Neece | Published

the shining

Ridley Scott dislikes The Shining, but he is certainly not alone. According to World of Reel, hating the Stanley Kubrick classic was popular at the time of its release, with many critics expressing their distaste for the film. Unbelievably at this point in history, the film was even nominated for a Golden Raspberry award, an ignominious nod that went to Stanley Kubrick for Worst Director.

Ridley Scott Isn’t A Fan Of Stanley Kubrick’s The Shining

the shining

While others have reassessed the film in recent years, Ridley Scott has remained adamant in his dislike for the adaptation of Stephen King’s novel, preferring the original book over the 1980 film. Kubrick has long been a love-him-or-hate-him director, but as the years have gone by, assessments of his films like Eyes Wide Shut and Barry Lyndon, along with The Shining, have moved from distasteful to positive. Famously, Roger Ebert had his own change of heart regarding the Stephen King adaptation, calling it a “great movie” some 26 years after having slapped it with a two-star review.

Ridley Scott Loves The Book

Ridley Scott persists in his dislike of the film, though, saying to Deadline that the book was much better and that Kubrick had ruined, “the house, the place, and the light,” calling The Shining Stephen King’s finest novel. He immediately found Kubrick’s brighter, more modern take on the visuals off-putting and garish compared to the gloomier, darker ones in the book. He also felt, along with other concerns, that the Boiler Room was depicted as a monster in the book, but not so in the movie.

Ridley Scott And Stanley Kubrick’s Relationship

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While Ridley Scott objects to The Shining on those aesthetic grounds, which admittedly also connect to the themes of the story, it didn’t hurt his brief friendship with the legendary director. The connection between the two filmmakers began when Kubrick called Scott to ask him how he accomplished the chestburster scene in Alien. From there, Kubrick went on to donate aerial footage photographed for The Shining, allowing Scott to use it in Blade Runner.

Even Stephen King Dislikes Kubrick’s Version Of The Story

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But Ridley Scott isn’t alone in his distaste for The Shining. He’s in good company with Stephen King himself, who has long criticized Kubrick’s adaptation of his novel as being beautiful to look at, but lacking a good story, comparing the film to a beautiful Cadillac with no engine under its hood. King’s distaste for Kubrick’s version of his story was so strong that he directed his own adaptation of the novel in 1997, which aired on ABC.

1980’s The Shining Is Still Beloved By Many Today

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Still, despite the objections of both Ridley Scott and Stephen King, The Shining has gained legendary status as one of Kubrick’s finest films and also remains perhaps the most widely known and well loved adaptation of a Stephen King novel. Most fans of the film are well aware that the cinematic adaptation plays fast and loose with its source material, but the classic visuals and structure of Kubrick’s film make it a perennial favorite of his fans. Given his distaste for Kubrick’s work and his love for King’s novel, perhaps it would be interesting to see what Ridley Scott would do with his own adaptation of The Shining, but the world may never know.