How The Shining's Camera Creates Constant Unease

Illustration for article titled How The Shining's Camera Creates Constant Unease

The Shining is a brilliant film, and it’s a scary film, and those two things are for the same reason.


The clever fellows at Wisecrack have made a video about the intriguing cinematography of The Shining, which remains one of the most beguiling things about the film. The camera, using careful framing and interesting tricks, becomes its own character, providing an off-kilter perspective that sets the whole film on edge.

I also really enjoy the way this video essay is shot—with the speaker superimposed over the film footage. It’s visually fun in a way that most video essays aren’t. I’m a big fan of the genre—as you can probably tell, from how frequently I share them. They do a great job of evincing critical points while also being a bit more digestible than written criticism. But they could use some more variety, and this video pulls that off well.

Check it out! Also, keep your eyes peeled—looks like The Shining’s written sequel might finally be getting an adaptation.

io9 Weekend Editor. Videogame writer at other places. Queer nerd girl.



I hate to admit, but I sort of don’t like The Shining. I like many of Kubrick’s works, and I think he has 3 or 4 masterpieces. Still, I just never got this film. The craziest thing is that I am a big horror fan and should instinctively respond to something like The Shining (especially since I am a Kubrick fan!), but I just can’t. The weird thing is that the black humor you find in this film (along with most of Kubrick’s other films) still hits me, just not the horror. Every time there’s a cut to that elevator or Danny screaming I just roll my eyes, then eventually I’m laughing when Jack does something batshit.

I wish this film had the same effect on my that it does on others.