Spatial Awareness in “The Shining” pt. 1

This is the first of a two-part video by Rob Ager in which he analyzes the floor plan of the Overlook Hotel in Stanley Kubrick’s film “The Shining” (based on the Stephen King novel). Ager argues that the floor plan is deliberately “impossible” and the reason for this is so that the viewer is subconsciously disoriented. The urge to “map one’s way” through a fictional world is strong, and Ager argues that Kubrick exploits this fundamental urge in order to give his film more psychological effect.

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One thought on “Spatial Awareness in “The Shining” pt. 1

  1. This is a very interesting and unique study of an imaginary space. Despite having seen this film several times, as most people probably have, I have never consciously noticed the impossibility of the hotel’s floor plan. Even without the cognitive recognition of the floor plan, the director achieved the desired effect, an eerie and disorientating experience for the viewer which accentuates the horror of the film. Definitely a very effective way of utilizing the concept of imaginary mapping which we read about this week!

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