In Stanley Kubrick’s 1980 horror classic The Shining, Scatman Crothers’ chef Hallorann warns Danny Lloyd’s Danny to stay the hell away from room 237 of the Overlook Hotel — which turns out to excellent, if ignored, advice. But while room 237 is to be avoided, the new documentary Room 237 is a must-see, one which EW’s Owen Gleiberman has described as a “mesmerizing pop-art document.” The work of first-time director Rodney Ascher, the film showcases the theories of five obsessive Shining fans as to what Kubrick really intended with his Stephen King adaptation and features footage from both that snowy chiller and many others.
Room 237 opens theatrically on March 29 and will also be available on VOD, SundanceNOW, and other digital outlets from that date. You can check out the film’s trailer, synopsis, and — exclusively — the new Room 237 poster below.
SYNOPSIS: After the box-office failure of Barry Lyndon, Stanley Kubrick decided to embark on a project that might have more commercial appeal. The Shining, Stephen King’s biggest critical and commercial success yet, seemed like a perfect vehicle. After an arduous production, Kubrick’s film received a wide release in the summer of 1980; the reviews were mixed, but the box office, after a slow start, eventually picked up. End of story? Hardly. In the 30-plus years since the film’s release, a considerable cult of Shining devotees has emerged, fans who claim to have decoded the film’s secret messages addressing everything from the genocide of Native Americans to a range of government conspiracies. Rodney Ascher’s wry and provocative Room 237 fuses fact and fiction through interviews with cultists and scholars, creating a kaleidoscopic deconstruction of Kubrick’s still-controversial classic.