The haunted hotel in Stanley Kubrick’s The Shining is more than a location. Its labyrinthine architecture is at the heart of this film’s impact, and it is part and parcel to Kubrick’s thematic concerns. The maze in the Overlook’s gardens provides some of the most striking visuals of the movie, but the long corridors of the hotel proper provoke the same disorientation as does that maze. The singular architecture of the hotel also seems to fascinate video essayists. Some have used it as the setting for their own mash-up, while others have used the film’s footage to create an unsettling 360° rendition of the Overlook Hotel.
Davide Rapp adds his own adventurous and fascinating take to this growing catalogue of video essays. Rapp has a reputation when it comes to translating film locations into captivating video essays: remember his work on Buster Keaton’s films The Elevator and Secret Gateways or his spatial reinterpretation of a scene in the Italian Gothic horror film Kill, Baby… Kill!
In this case, he extracts 36 seconds (864 frames, to be exact) from one of the film’s iconic long takes of the young Danny driving through the hotel corridors on his tricycle. He then treats these frames as if they were dominoes, rearranging and positioning them into a three-dimensional strip. Where Kubrick turned the corridor into images, Rapp turns the images into a corridor. The effect, paired with a staggering soundtrack, adds another layer of ghostly appeal to Kubrick’s horror masterpiece.