Reviews provided by RottenTomatoes
Kubrick is after a cool, sunlit vision of hell, born in the bosom of the nuclear family, but his imagery -- with its compulsive symmetry and brightness -- is too banal to sustain interest, while the incredibly slack narrative line forestalls suspense.
New York Times:
Kubrick isn't out for screams, but he manages to make his movie thoroughly unnerving by keeping the horror so close to home.
As a ghost story and adaptation of the Stephen King novel, it's largely a failure. On the other hand, as an example of directorial bravura and as a study of madness and the unreliable narrator, it's a brilliant success.
The movie is not about ghosts but about madness and the energies it sets loose in an isolated situation primed to magnify them.
Kubrick has made a movie that will have to be reckoned with on the highest level.
With everything to work with, director Stanley Kubrick has teamed with jumpy Jack Nicholson to destroy all that was so terrifying about Stephen King's bestseller.