I enlisted for the horror film elective class simply because I love watching horror movies. Whether or not I have watched the movie before, I am willing to watch it as long as it is a good horror movie in my standard. Suffice it to say that I kept an open mind and tried to get rid of any expectation prior to attending the class. However, I could not help but assume that the classics of horror film would be shown. I had this belief because I thought that they would be shown either for their exemplification of a good horror movie or for historical purposes. I was definitely somewhat disappointed when I realized in the beginning of the semester that the class would not include old or classical horror movies.
I express this sentiment because if there was one horror movie that I would recommend to anybody, it would be the 1980 Stanley Kubrick film The Shining. First, it is by far my favorite and most memorable horror movie. I have watched a lot, and I mean a lot, of horror movies but The Shining is still the one that scares me the most. No matter how many times I watch it, it remains to have the same terrifying effect on me. I think that the fact that it continues to scare people until now makes it worthwhile to show and watch in class.
Second, all the aspects of the movie contribute to making it a successful horror movie. The plot includes character isolation, suspense and mystery. In addition, the characters deal with super-natural entities as well as mental and emotional trauma. Add that to excellent scenes, camera angles and background music as well as a great cast (i.e. Jack Nicholson, Shelley Duvall, etc.) and you have an amazing horror movie. I honestly think that it would be useful to show the movie in the purpose of illustrating what makes up a good horror movie.
Last, I would recommend the showing of The Shining in class for historical purposes. I personally wanted to see the development or evolution of the horror genre through prominent movies of the years, and I believe that I am not the only Horror Film student who felt that way. That is why I think it would be good to show a few classical horror movies as a way of discussing the evolution of the horror genre. And I think that The Shining should be shown given this context because it was revolutionary during its time and I consider it an important milestone of the horror genre and to film-making in general.