Today in Movie History: May 23

Given its status as one of the most beloved horror movies of all time, it’s hard to believe that critics were none too fond of The Shining when it was originally released. Indeed, Stephen King himself always expressed dissatisfaction with it — adapted from one of his most personal works — and even responded with a newer made-for-television version that was much more faithful to the book… and much less frightening. I wrestle with the merits and flaws of the Kubrick film on a regular basis, but the power it holds cannot be denied. It opened today in 1980.

If’ it’s horror you like, you could swing by Pankot Palace for a dinner of monkey’s brains before having your heart ripped out of your chest. Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom was generally considered the runt of the Indy litter (at least before the reviled Kingdom of the Crystal Skull came out… and seriously people, it’s not that bad), but what it lacks in pedigree it makes up for in pure batshit insanity. Granted, it plays better as a series of Indiana Jones vignettes than a completed film and you have to put up with more than perhaps you should (*cough-cough* Kate Capshaw), but Amrish Puri’s infernal villain still ranks as a series favorite, and Harrison Ford’s Indy remains as charming as ever. It opened today in 1984.


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