Why 'The Shining' sequel 'Doctor Sleep' won't include this horror movie cliché

Doctor Sleep stars Ewan McGregor (Credit: Warner Bros)
Doctor Sleep stars Ewan McGregor (Credit: Warner Bros)

Mike Flanagan has earned his horror stripes thanks to movies like Hush, Ouija: Origin of Evil and Gerald's Game but now hes following up his last Stephen King adaptation with a far more high profile one.

That being the sequel to The Shining, Doctor Sleep, which he has worked both with King and the estate of Stanley Kubrick to deliver a worthy follow-up to the film and the original book.

However, there is one horror cliché that won’t be making an appearance in the film and that is the “jump scare.”

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The Shining starring Jack Nicholson (Credit: Warner Bros)
The Shining starring Jack Nicholson (Credit: Warner Bros)

This cinema technique is common in horror movies as its used to earn a quck scare by abruptly changing an image, camera angle or event, usually with a frightening sound to boot.

“When we were developing the project and when we were talking about the metered expectations audiences have about, in particular, jump scares and startles and the pacing of those, which we’re utterly uninterested in this film,” Flanagan explains.

“I would say, ‘What’s your favorite jump scare in The Shining?”

“There isn’t one,” the director continued. “The same is true here.

“We used a lot of the lessons that Kubrick taught us about how to do a psychological thriller, a supernatural thriller, in a way that is more about suffocating atmosphere and tension than it ever is about the kind of traditional scares as we understand them today.”

Doctor Sleep’s first trailer was released last week and featured Ewan McGregor in the title role. “Doctor Sleep” is the nickname given to his character Danny Torrance, the grown-up version of Danny from The Shining, by the patients he works with as an orderly.

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Here’s the official synopsis for the film:

Struggling with alcoholism, Dan Torrance remains traumatized by the sinister events that occurred at the Overlook Hotel when he was a child. His hope for a peaceful existence soon becomes shattered when he meets Abra, a teen who shares his extrasensory gift of the "shine." Together, they form an unlikely alliance to battle the True Knot, a cult whose members try to feed off the shine of innocents to become immortal.

Doctor Sleep also stars Rebecca Ferguson and Kyliegh Curran in her feature film debut as Abra with Carl Lumbly, Zahn McClarnon, Emily Alyn Lind, Bruce Greenwood, Jocelin Donahue, Alex Essoe, and Cliff Curtis in supporting roles.

Doctor Sleep will be in cinemas from October 30, 2019.