PRINT March 2013


Rodney Ascher’s Room 237

Rodney Ascher, Room 237, 2012, digital video, color and black-and-white, sound, 102 minutes. Clip from Stanley Kubrick’s The Shining, 1980.

BY SO MANY MEASURES, Room 237 is a diminutive film. Directed by Rodney Ascher (reputed for his 2010 short, S from Hell), it is restricted in scope to the interwoven commentaries of five devotees of Stanley Kubrick’s 1980 classic, The Shining, whose day jobs range from ABC correspondent (Bill Blakemore) and history professor (Geoffrey Cocks) to experimental musician (John Fell Ryan), playwright (Juli Kearns), and professional “conspiracy hunter” (Jay Weidner). The remarks of these aficionados are laid over corresponding clips from Kubrick’s film, in addition to occasional passages from the director’s other works and pertinent media footage from the beginning of the twentieth century on. Collectively, the perspectives voiced in Room 237 are rambling and disheveled, regularly shuttling from personal epiphanies experienced when first watching the film to obsessive ruminations across

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