Considering all the ills facing the Torrance family in Stanley Kubrick’s 1980 adaptation of Stephen King’s The Shining, at least food was in plentiful supply. This bedeviled family has 99 problems, one might say, but a brunch ain’t one. A good chunk of the film’s first act is given over to a sequence in which gregarious chef Dick Hallorann (Scatman Crothers) tells naive, vulnerable Wendy Torrance (Shelley Duvall) all about the tasty comestibles stored in the voluminous storage room of the Overlook Hotel. Perhaps that scene was the true inspiration for All Food And No Play, a collaborative art project by photographer Davide Luciano and food stylist Claudia Ficca in which moments from The Shining are cunningly translated into culinary delights.
The project has the net effect of taking the edge off Kubrick’s famously edgy creation. Of all the disturbing images in the film, for instance, perhaps none is so indelible as that of the ghostly Grady twins, who pop up occasionally in the ugly carpeted halls of the Overlook to say creepy, unhelpful things to young Danny (Danny Lloyd). The sinister sisters are not so foreboding, however, when they are rendered as matching cupcakes.
Similarly, the Overlook’s once-nightmarish hedge maze becomes something almost homey and familial when it is represented by frozen peas. Who, after all, could be the least bit threatened by an ingredient commonly found in tuna noodle casseroles and chicken pot pies?