Apparently there’s much more to Stanley Kubrick’s The Shining than we all realised. It’s believed that the film contains a range of clues revealing that the Apollo moon landings were faked. Bonkers, right? Or might the conspiracy theorists be onto something?
In my blog “Were the Apollo moon landings faked?” I assessed the footage of the original 1960s missions to the moon. Conspiracy theorists believe that this footage was shot on a film set, not the actual moon, with claims about suspicious shadows, missing stars and fluttering flags commonly cited as evidence.
Those who believe that the moon landings were a hoax think that NASA — desperate to beat Russia in the Space Race — contacted director Stanley Kubrick and asked him to film the scenes. Why do people believe that Kubrick was responsible? Because he allegedly littered his 1980 adaptation of Stephen King’s The Shining with symbolism and clues that the moon landings were faked. Burdened by his deception, The Shining was Kubrick’s way of confessing his role in the monumental NASA conspiracy.
It’s said that Kubrick filmed the fake moon landing while he was working on his sci-fi epic 2001: A Space Odyssey. In that film, he used a special effects technique known as Front Screen Projection to create backgrounds in a scene, and some people believe they can see evidence of this technique in the moon landing footage. (Have a read of my previous blog for my thoughts on the various ‘clues’ in the footage.)
But it’s the clues in The Shining that are the most telling:
- Psychic child Danny Torrance is wearing The Shining’s most obvious clue. His jumper has a knitted image of the Apollo 11 rocket. (Nobody said Kubrick’s clues were subtle.)
- Kubrick changed the number of the haunted room in the Overlook Hotel from 217, as it was in the book, to 237. He did this because the distance between the Earth and the moon is 237,000 miles, so Room 237 represents the fake moon landing set. Isn’t it obvious?
- In the film, Danny sees the corpses of twins. The Latin word for “twins” is “Gemini” and Gemini was the name of the NASA missions before Apollo.
- In the hotel lobby, there are 6 crates of soft drink 7-Up, which is because only 6 out of 7 of the Apollo space missions landed on the moon. Of course!
- The hexagonal pattern on the carpets in the Overlook Hotel is specifically designed to look like the Apollo 11 launching pads. In one scene, Danny, wearing his Apollo 11 jumper, is crouching on a rocket launchpad-shaped carpet pattern, slowly stands up and walks into Room 237 — a particularly patent example of Kubrick confessing through his imagery.
- Finally, the page that Jack leaves behind at the typewriter has the words “All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy”. But all is not what it seems. “ALL” should actually be read as “A11”, short for Apollo 11.
Can we really shrug all this off as baloney?
Well, yes. Yes, we can.
I’ve written about many conspiracy theories since I started “Behind The Curtain”. Some are more compelling than others (don’t even get me started on the Royal Family lizard theory or the Flat Earth model), but this one falls into the “load of old balls” category. Clearly the above ‘clues’ are visual and auditory pareidolia, i.e. seeing and hearing patterns where there aren’t any. Pareidolia is about seeing what you want to see. If you’re desperate to find something, you’ll over-analyse until you do, no matter how flimsy or far-fetched your ‘discovery’ is. (‘Paul is Dead’ and the ‘Face on Mars’ are more examples of this phenomenon.)
That’s exactly what the moon landing conspiracy theorists have done with The Shining. Danny’s jumper is just an example of tragic 70s fashion. Kubrick changed the room number from 217 to 237 because the hotel where the movie was shot didn’t want to frighten future guests from staying in Room 217, and Room 237 was non-existent. And even if 237 is a reference to the 237,000 mile distance between the Earth and the moon, it’s… still not. Because the distance is actually 238,855 miles. And the “ALL” = “A11” thing? Nope, I’m not even going to dignify that one with a response.
Basically, I can say with plenty of conviction that this particular theory isn’t just baloney. It’s extremely pungent baloney salad with lashings of tosh and twaddle.
Actually, Nan Taylor sums it up the best:
Next week: did the US government deliberately demolish the Twin Towers?