the shining

Reading what’s extraneous


Last week at Big Other, Paul Kincaid put up a brief but intriguing post in which he asks to what extent various factors surrounding a text influence the way we think about it or its author. He gives the following example:

The program I use for databasing my library pulls down information from a wide variety of sources ranging from the British Library and the Library of Congress to Amazon. More often than not, this can produce some very strange results. I have, for instance, seen novels by Iain Banks categorized as ‘Food and Health’, and novels by Ursula K. Le Guin categorized as ‘Business’. In all probability, these are just slips by somebody bored, though you do wonder what it was about the books per se that led to such curious mistakes.

Paul’s musings raise many interesting questions. For one thing, we might wonder whether the factors he’s describing are indeed extraneous or external to texts. Because I can imagine a good post-structuralist immediately objecting that texts more porous than that, and that it’s all just a sea of endless texts slipping fluidly into one another.

Me, I don’t have a problem with treating texts as discrete and coherent entities, but I admit the situation is complicated.


Behind the Scenes & Presses / 15 Comments
August 13th, 2013 / 4:10 pm

Spatial Anomalies in Kubrick’s The Shining

How Stanley Kubrick used Escher-styled spacial awareness & set design anomalies to disorientate viewers of his horror classic The Shining.

[Further maps & thoughts on this film and others here.]

Film / 15 Comments
August 11th, 2011 / 12:48 pm

Evidence of why there hasn’t been a good American film in 20 years

This is a half-scale, all CG simulation of the ‘elevator of blood’ from The Shining that I did just for amusement in spare hours. I never expected it to look exactly like the real thing. The RealFlow fluid sim uses only about 1.6 million particles and therefore appears thicker and ‘blobbyer’ than an actual water-like liquid at this scale. I think at least ten million particles would begin to look convincing, but since this took about a month to calculate and render on on I-7, 3.2gh quad core, it isnt practical to attempt more particles without a far more powerful and prohibitively expensive computer.

Film / 25 Comments
May 17th, 2010 / 8:59 pm

Sixth Mess Section

1. Alone, for one moment. –directions to performers from Erik Satie

2. Lutgardis, mystic. Born at Tongeren in 1182, died at Aywieres in 1246. Lutgardis’s family fobbed her off on a Benedictine nunnery when she was still a girl. In her mid-twenties she decided that she needed a more austere existence and so joined a group of Cistercian nuns near Brussels. There she levitated and dripped blood from her forehead and hair. –Marina Abramovic’s “The Artist is Present” In Another Context

3. “Try going a day without it you’ll miss it Charlie–” –Check It Out! with Dr. Steve Brule is live

4. The Pharmako trilogy by Dale Pendell is a massive accomplishment, and great to read. You will want them. Look inside.

ADDITION: 5. The hallway of blood scene in The Shining, recreated with CGI. Look up.

Random / 28 Comments
May 17th, 2010 / 8:09 pm

Anyone know of any good movies in which a labyrinth or series of tunnels figures heavily (such as The Shining or Satyricon, or even, in its own way, Solaris)? Having fucked maze dreams lately and want to extend it into waking life.

THE INTERUPTION: “Ok… I understand.” :)

The 1st 3:00 minute scene in this montage from the Shining gives me such a mind erection: I think I am going to buy a blood red iPod with one button on its face which when you press it just plays this scene at damage volume inside the head of who I have handed it to to listen and to know. I would use it every day:

God, it makes me punch the air the air in joy to see to see to see Jack nail that shit so hard. That smile of exasperation. Days and days and days.

Random / 50 Comments
December 8th, 2008 / 4:02 pm