Room 237 review

Wackos spout crap about hidden meanings behind Stanley Kubrick’s classic movie The Shining.

That is documentary Room 237 in a nutshell. Literally. A small group of utter nutters with far too little intellectual clout and far too much time on their hands “reveal” that the seminal horror film is an allegory for the holocaust, complete with a thousand subtle references, a similar exposure of the genocide of native American Indians and a cryptic admission that Kubrick masterminded the filming of the Apollo 11 moon landing “hoax”. As the marketing behind the film posits, could some of their theories be plausible? Could there be any truth behind them?

No. Not In the slightest. None of them. It’s all nonsense. Blatant nonsense. And that leaves behind a pretty damned pointless film. There is little insight into The Shining or its impact, or into the deranged personalities behind the crackpot theories for that matter, and Room 237’s only accomplishments are its demonstration of how ridiculous people can be and providing motivation for us all to raise our eyebrows and laugh at people who live on different planets.

Director Rodney Ascher claims that it is plausible that The Shining is filled with these consciously designed “signs and symbols”, which is either par for the hype or makes him as deluded as his interviewees. What the documentary actually does is make it very clear what we all already know about conspiracy theorists and conspiracy theories – if you look for anything hard enough you will find it and it isn’t too difficult to make something out of nothing. Rather like the film itself.

2 out of 5

26th Oct 2012 | Official site | On IMDb