Stanley Kubrick’s The Shining Reimagined as Wes Anderson and David Lynch Movies

Stan­ley Kubrick’s The Shin­ing might have left crit­ics scratch­ing their heads when it first came out, but it has since come to be rec­og­nized as a hor­ror mas­ter­piece. The film is both styl­is­ti­cal­ly dis­tinc­tive – those long track­ing shots, the one-point per­spec­tive, that com­plete­ly amaz­ing car­pet­ing – and nar­ra­tive­ly open-end­ed. Kubrick freights the movie with lots of sig­ni­fiers with­out clear­ly point­ing out what they sig­ni­fy: Like why is there Native Amer­i­can imagery through­out the film? Why is Jack Nichol­son writ­ing his mas­ter­piece on a Ger­man type­writer? And, for that mat­ter, why is he read­ing a Play­girl mag­a­zine while wait­ing for his job inter­view? The mul­ti­va­lence of The Shin­ing inspired a whole fea­ture-length doc­u­men­tary about the mean­ing of the movie called Room 237, where var­i­ous the­o­rists talk through their inter­pre­ta­tions. Is it pos­si­ble that the movie is both about the hor­rors of the Holo­caust and about the stag­ing of the Apol­lo 11 moon land­ing?

So per­haps it isn’t sur­pris­ing that The Shin­ing has been the fod­der for film­mak­ers to impose their own mean­ing on the flick. A cou­ple recent video pieces have reimag­ined the movie as shot by two of the reign­ing auteurs of cin­e­ma – Wes Ander­son and David Lynch.

Wes Ander­son is, of course, the film­mak­er of such twee, for­mal­ly exact­ing works as The Roy­al Tenen­baums, Moon­rise King­dom and, most recent­ly, The Grand Budapest Hotel. Film­mak­er Steve Rams­den cre­ates a quick and wit­ty mash up of The Over­look Hotel and the Grand Budapest. The video rais­es all sorts of ques­tions. How, for exam­ple, would The Shin­ing have been dif­fer­ent with an offi­cious concierge with a pen­cil mus­tache? You can see Wes Anderson’s The Shin­ing above.

Of the two film­mak­ers, David Lynch is the­mat­i­cal­ly clos­er to Kubrick. Both have made vio­lent, con­tro­ver­sial movies that plumb the murky depths of the mas­cu­line mind. Both have made inno­v­a­tive films that play on mul­ti­ple lev­els. And both made movies that com­plete­ly freaked me out as a teenag­er. Kubrick was even a big fan of Lynch. In his book Catch­ing the Big Fish: Med­i­ta­tion, Con­scious­ness, and Cre­ativ­i­ty, Lynch recalls meet­ing Kubrick, and Kubrick telling the young film­mak­er that Eraser­head was his favorite movie. If that does­n’t pro­vide you with a lifetime’s worth of val­i­da­tion, I don’t know what will.

Richard Veri­na crams every sin­gle Lynchi­an quirk into his eight-minute video – from creepy red cur­tains to dream-like super­im­po­si­tions to real­ly inter­est­ing light fix­tures. Sure, the piece might be a minute or two too long but for hard­core fans this piece is a hoot. Veri­na even man­ages to work in ref­er­ences to Lynch’s bête noir, Dune. You can see Blue Shin­ing above.

Relat­ed Con­tent:

Stan­ley Kubrick’s Anno­tat­ed Copy of Stephen King’s The Shin­ing

The Mak­ing of The Shin­ing

Saul Bass’ Reject­ed Poster Con­cepts for The Shin­ing (and His Pret­ty Excel­lent Sig­na­ture)

Jonathan Crow is a Los Ange­les-based writer and film­mak­er whose work has appeared in Yahoo!, The Hol­ly­wood Reporter, and oth­er pub­li­ca­tions. You can fol­low him at @jonccrow. And check out his blog Veep­to­pus, fea­tur­ing pic­tures of vice pres­i­dents with octo­pus­es on their heads.  The Veep­to­pus store is here.

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  • Jordan Leavitt says:

    This is a real­ly clever mash-up of the Grand Budapest Hotel and The Shin­ing! Weird­ly, the col­or schemes work real­ly well togeth­er. How­ev­er, I think the Shin­ing is just too inher­ent­ly dis­turb­ing to work as a quirky com­e­dy dra­ma. The David Lynch mashup prob­a­bly works bet­ter.

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