Room 237

Synopsis: A subjective documentary that explores the numerous theories about the hidden meanings within 'Stanley Kubrick (I)' 's Kubrick''s film The Shining (1980). The film may be over 30 years old but it continues to inspire debate, speculation, and mystery. Five very different points of view are illuminated through voice over, film clips, animation and dramatic reenactments. Together they'll draw the audience into a new maze, one with endless detours and dead ends, many ways in, but no way out.
Genre: Documentary
Director(s): Rodney Ascher
Production: IFC Films
  2 wins & 16 nominations.
Rotten Tomatoes:
102 min


- The poster

that came out in Europe,

at least in England,

I believe,

before the movie was released

in Europe said,

"The wave of terror

that swept across America."

And Kubrick controlled

the posters very carefully.


it made you do a double take.

I remember seeing it in Europe.

I was the Rome Bureau Chief

at the time for ABC News.

And I remember looking at it.

It said, "The wave of terror

that swept across America."

What's he talking about?

And you'd sort of think

that he was talking about

the impact

of the book The Shining.


The impact of the movie

that had just opened over there?


It didn't quite fit.

The wave of terror

that swept across America

from Portland, Maine,

to Portland, Oregon,

was the genocidal armies

and the white men with their ax

clearing it all and bringing in

extractive industries,

among many other good things

as well.

But that was the wave of terror

that swept across America,

terrifying, of course,

the American Indians.

- I went in to see this movie in

Leicester Square Movie Theater,

right near

Leicester Square in London.

And I remember it

quite clearly from...

I can even remember the seats

we were sitting in.

If I went back to that theater,

I could point them to you,

sort of near the back

and over to the left.

From the moment of the opening

astonishing helicopter shot,

I was terrified.

I had no idea what was coming.

I remember sort of sitting

on the front edge

of my theater seat there

to keep from falling off.

And I remember gripping my

belt buckle with my left hand,

I think it was...

yes, my left hand,

sort of to keep from falling off

the edge of the seat

and to try to control my terror

as I watched this movie.

I had no idea what was coming.

I hadn't read the book.

I had barely seen

any of the posters.

And I remember that I was

stunned when the movie was over.

We left the theater, went in...

down into

our underground car park

to get into the car to leave.

And as we were driving up

out of the car park,

I was sitting

in the back left seat.

I was thinking, "What was that?

What was that?

"What was it?

What was it?

What was it?"

And I think

my visual imagination

looked at that

Calumet baking powder can,

the one right behind

Hallorann's head

when he was talking to Danny.

I knew what "calumet" meant.

It meant "peace pipe."

And I thought to myself,

"peace pipe, Indians.

"Oh, my goodness,

they're all over the place

in that movie."

- The loser

has to keep America clean.

- And I suddenly

said to my friends,

"That movie

was about the genocide

of the American Indians."

And they said,

"What are you talking about?"

And I started explaining it,

because I'd noticed

the Calumet baking soda can.

In the first... the first time

we seen one,

it's a single

baking powder can straight on.

And you can see the whole word,


so there's no duplicity,

like the little girls

represent later.

This is an honest truth,

an honest peace pipe

between them.

The other time we see

the Calumet baking powder cans

is when they're

very carefully placed

behind Jack Nicholson's head

when he's talking to Grady.

- No need to rub it in,

Mr. Grady.

I'll deal with that situation

as soon as I get out of here.

- There's about six

or seven of them stacked up,

and they're

all turned different ways,

and you can't read

any one of them completely.

It's... I've always interpreted

those as being broken,

dishonest peace pipe treaties.

They're not... these two guys,

Grady and Jack,

are not being honest

with each other.

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Submitted on August 05, 2018


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