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MIRRORFORM ANALYSIS – SKIP TO A SECTION
INTRO ⎔ THE INTERVIEW ⎔ CLOSING DAY ⎔ A MONTH LATER ⎔ TUESDAY
THURSDAY ⎔ SATURDAY ⎔ MONDAY ⎔ WEDNESDAY
SPECIALS: GREAT PARTY ⎔ GINGERBREAD HOUSE ⎔ SHINED & CONFUSED
MIDWAY ⎔ MIDDLE-END
What’s really neat about this one is that, in the mirrorform, Jack has just killed the radio, at 11:46pm on a Wednesday night, leading to this scene between Hallorann and the forest ranger. Then, 20 seconds later (in the backwards sense) we get the placard “8am”, which starts the final day of the film’s major events, which is never named, but which we know to be a Thursday. So it’s almost as if this THURSDAY placard is telling us that this is the moment of Dick’s night when the clock struck 12, when Wednesday became Thursday.
If not, it barely matters, because it’ll be Thursday in 20 seconds, but here’s why I find all this neat. If I’m right about that, that means that the first Thursday, Saturday, Monday and Wednesday, are all touched by the lengthy Wednesday section as it creeps around the other side of the mirrorform, which would mean that Wednesday mirrors (or exists) over almost 50 minutes of the 143 minute film, and the final Thursday mirrors (or exists) over the other 90 (the last couple minutes are on later days, we assume). So the day of the son (“Thor’s day”) accounts for almost twice the day of the father (“Odin’s day”). But then, what’s funny is, if that was intentional, the section actually called THURSDAY by name, is the shortest in the film, at 50 seconds. Similarly, Danny seems like a meek and vulnerable child, but he’ll best his wise and aged Odin.
What’s certain is both Thursdays include the arrival of the film’s two big storms, and Thor was, among other things, a storm god.
The ranger tells Dick “Now, maybe they’ve got their radio turned off, or they’re in a place where they can’t hear it” and here we have Wendy and Danny gallivanting about in the snow. The song that plays on the forward soundtrack here is György Legeti’s Lontano, which means “distant” or “far”, which is just what Dick and the Forest Service are from the Torrances, what Wendy and Danny are from the radio, and what Jack is increasingly from his family. Perhaps the postcards here are partly to remind us of exactly how far away the rangers are. Though, since they’re out by the labyrinth, that means that the postcards in the kiosk there would be close at hand.
As Hallorann’s bulk streams by the parked snowcat and the spot of the hotel where he’ll get the axe, the playing of Wendy and Danny speaks to why he’ll make the sacrifice. He did it so that this family could have some kind of future.
This is one of my favourite crossfades, transitioning between the murdered radio, and Dick Hallorann, Jack’s next (onscreen) victim. As Dick has been pacing around the room, Wendy and Danny are having a snowball fight, and as they cavort, they’re almost always exactly at Dick’s sides like this. Perhaps a coincidence, but it nicely suggests their closeness, and the lengths Dick went to to save these two.
As for the murdered radio, it makes a nice overlay for the hotel as an entity of death. It’s also difficult to make out here, but the snowcat is sitting around outside, near the garage, as if recently used. So in this shot (seconds before the end of Redrum Road – Round 1, and the proper film’s 1/3 mark) we actually have all of Jack’s victims in one place. This won’t happen again. Also, this is 2783 seconds into the film, a sort of 237/238 jumble.
As we zoom in on Jack’s growing madness, backward Jack rips the three plugs out of the radio. Three plugs for three murders? Also, note the fire blazing in the distance. That fire is directly below where we later see room 238 to be.
This almost looks like Kubrick’s version of Ken, By Request Only.
This overlay actually plays well with my Meeker Massacre theory. In the sense that the Colorado map overlays with Jack’s brain as we watch him go insane in real time. Oh man, his right eye is overlaying with the county known as Kit Carson, the man that Carson City was named for. It’s also touching Lincoln county and Elbert country. Delbert Grady sent him to do these murders and Ullman drives a Lincoln in the novel.
Click here to continue on to Through the Mirrorform, Part 7: Saturday
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OTHER MAIN PAGES FOR SHINING ANALYSIS
THE MIRRORFORM ⎔ THE BEATLES ⎔ THE RUM AND THE RED
BACKGROUND ART ⎔ OVERLOOK PHOTOGRAPHS ⎔ GOLDEN SPIRALS
PHI GRIDS ⎔ PATTERNS ⎔ VIOLENCE AND INDIGENA ⎔ ABSURDITIES
THE STORY ROOM ⎔ ANIMAL SYMBOLS ⎔ THE ANNOTATED SHINING