visceral mind-blowing slit-scan lightshow


Senior Member
Hi everyone,
in a book about cinema, I find this sentence:

2001: A Space Odyssey (1968) is a cutting-edge sci-fi meditation on the relationship between man and machine, brilliantly underscored by a classical music soundtrack while also reflecting the times through the inclusion of a visceral mind-bending slit-scan lightshow.

What about the part in bold (and especially the underlined part)? It seems a bit convoluted to me.

Thank you,
  • Myridon

    Senior Member
    English - US
    There's nothing wrong with convoluted. I think we need a more specific question than "What about it?" ;)


    Senior Member
    English but my first language was German
    Does the definition of slit-scan photography help?

    Example of slit-scan technique (self portrait while typing on computer keyboard). Camera is rotated into portrait orientation, and slit scan that would originally run left-to-right now runs top-to bottom

    The slit-scan photography technique is a photographic and cinematographic process where a moveable slide, into which a slit has been cut, is inserted between the camera and the subject to be photographed.

    More generally, "slit-scan photography" refers to cameras that use a slit, which is particularly used in scanning cameras in panoramic photography. This has numerous applications. This article discusses the manual artistic technique.[1]


    Senior Member
    Nothing wrong with being convoluted. I meant to say: too difficult to understand for me!:D
    My question was: what in the world does that part mean?
    Reflecting the times: reflecting the Sixties (when the film was made)?
    I get visceral and mind-bending, sort of.
    Slit-scan lightshow: is it the same as simply saying slit-scan? What does lightshow mean, a mere trick/play of light?

    Thank you for the image, but it does not help me. I've looked up what slit-scan technique is, even though I have not understood it perfectly, but it's that whole part that confuses me (again, too convoluted for me!).

    Thank you both.