Stanley Kubrick faked the moon landing and then left clues admitting what he’d done in The Shining.
That’s the premise put forward by writer and director Jay Weidner, anyway.
In a now-deleted post, Weidner theorised that the Apollo 11 landing was actually directed and faked by Kubrick, and The Shining was his way of apologising for faking them.
His theory is based largely on the fact that Kubrick directed 2001: A Space Odyssey – around the same time man was prepping to make their way to the moon. So is it true? Probably not. But he makes some interesting points.
Here are some of his best (and worst):
The Overlook Hotel Is America
For almost the entire first hour of the film, Jack’s wife Wendy and his son Danny wear red, white and blue. The manager of Overlook Hotel is also wearing red, white and blue – but that’s just the beginning.
The hotel in this symbolic interpretation is America, according to the theory. It was built, just like the manager says, on the graves of Indians.
Weidner writes: “The real truth is that this movie is really about the deal that Stanley Kubrick made with the Manager of the Overlook Hotel (America). This deal was to get Kubrick to re-create, in other words, to fake, the Apollo 11 Moon landing.”
Not convinced? While interviewing Jack, the manager has an American Eagle behind his head, and to the right of the desk is an American flag.
In the book it’s room 217, but in the film the number was changed to 237.
Weidner claims it was changed because 237,000 miles is the average distance from the Earth to the moon.
However, in an interview with Kubrick, it’s stated that the number was changed on behalf of the Timberline Lodge in Oregon, where the hotel shots were filmed. Management feared that guests would no longer wish to stay in 217 if Kubrick shot such a nightmarish sequence in that room, so they changed it to room 237 – which doesn’t exist in the real hotel.
Which directly relates to…Danny’s sweater
Playing with his toys in the corridor, Danny wears an Apollo 11 U.S.A sweater and rises before venturing into room 237 where the rotting corpse of a woman lies in wait.
And Weidner claims the scene is directly symbolic of the moon landing: “Danny is literally carrying a symbolic Apollo 11, on his body, via the sweater, to the Moon as he walks over to room 237. Why do I think this? Because the average distance from the Earth to the Moon is 237,000 miles.”
According to NASA, these figures aren’t incorrect. It’s actually an average distance of 382,500 kilometres, which equates to 237,674 miles.
In the scene where Jack throws a tennis ball at the wall, there’s a Native American artistic motif that could look suspiciously like a group of rockets about to be launched.
The small details
The remainder of the theory draws comparisons from other props and stylistic choices. The font of Jack’s typewritten mantras ‘All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy’ are another far-fetched hint at the ‘All’ being read as ‘A11’ for Apollo 11.
Kubrick’s amendment to King’s novel also includes the twin girls (in the book, only one was used). Weidner believes it alludes to the previous Apollo missions: Gemini.
It’s definitely a far-fetched scenario.
Kubrick died in 1999, though, so unfortunately he can’t weigh in on the truth.