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'Room 237' doc deciphers the hidden themes in Kubrick's 'The Shining'

by Take Two

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Poster for the film "Room 237." Room 237

Here's an extra credit question: What movie from 1980 inspired this review by Roger Ebert:  "The movie is not about ghosts but about madness and the energies it sets loose in an isolated situation primed to magnify them." Answer: "The Shining."

The film, directed by Stanley Kubrick, starred Jack Nicholson as Jack Torrance, a writer, living with his wife and young son in a very creepy hotel. Jack slowly loses his mind and in this terrifying scene, goes after his family with an ax.
 
Roger Ebert also had this to say about the film "There is no way, within the film, to be sure with any confidence exactly what happens, or precisely how, or really why"

But plenty of folks beg to differ with Ebert on that one. Fans of "The Shining" who have watched it hundreds of times believe Kubrick planted hidden messages in everything from the carpet used to line hotel hallways to the sweater worn in one scene by the boy playing Nicholson's son. 

These "Shining" theorists believes the film has hidden themes dealing with everything from genocide to government cover-ups.

The new film "Room 237" explores some of these alternative readings of the Shining. When I spoke earlier with director Rodney Ascher, he explains why he made this documentary.

 

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