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The Shining's Overlook Hotel is even creepier than you think


British filmmaker Rob Ager's incredible discovery will blow your mind, Kubrick-style...

Stanley Kubrick, director of The Shining

If you're anything like me, dear Shadowlocked readers, you'll agree that there are not many pastimes more entertaining and enlightening than the art of film and its astounding myriad of characters, creators, and stories. The inspired giddiness and enthusiasm that is film geekery never fails to interest and amaze me. So when I come across something that really flabbergasts me, I feel that it's only right that I should pass along the learning opportunity to you. Are you ready for today's "holy crap!" moment?

Because I'm not sure you're ready.

Ok, here goes...

The late Stanley Kubrick is universally appreciated as one of the greatest directors in film history. Love his work or loathe it, you cannot argue that Kubrick was anything but a bonafide auteur of the highest order. The polar opposite of a laissez-faire helmsman, Stanley was notorious, infamous, and legendary for the utmost and exacting detail and specificity in which his films were crafted. No detail went unnoticed, no shot was wrapped until done exactly as ordered, regardless of the number of retakes after retakes after retakes... In short, nothing ever made it from camera to screen without Kubrick's laser eye proclaiming absolute perfection.

So imagine the widespread surprise that has been recently circulating amongst the Intertubes regarding a critique by amateur English filmmaker Rob Ager of Kubrick's horror masterpiece The Shining. In short, Ager makes an extremely convincing case that the sinister setting of said film, the Overlook Hotel, is not only freaky beyond all reason, but a structural and literal impossibility as well. The roughly 20 minute critique, broken up into two succinctly-brilliant parts, follows below. If you have any interest in this movie, or the art of movie-making in general, this is required viewing. Trust me - you won't be disappointed...

What say you, Shadowlocked readers? Did Stanley Kubrick just make some engineering missteps that went unnoticed while he was busying himself with other elements of The Shining, or was this all a calculated move on his part to ratchet up the discomfort level of the viewer's subconscious? Knowing Kubrick's work as I do, I agree with Ager and find it impossible to believe that the late Stanley could have been so lazily willy-nilly with the layout of the Overlook without realizing what he was doing. Whatever your opinion about Kubrick's additions to and subtractions from Stephen King's incredible eponymous novel, his result was a movie that has been nearly universally hailed as a modern horror classic. And I can hardly believe that any of it came about by accident.

You may have just discovered one of the subliminal reasons for The Shining's powerful reputation, why the hairs stand up on the back of your neck time after time during the film without you knowing exactly why - the viewer is not just trapped in an evil-infested hotel in the middle of nowhere with these characters, but trapped in a hotel that could not possibly be built as they, or you, see it. A hotel from Hell indeed.

Top 10 images of distant horror in the movies


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