Room 237
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Many movies lend themselves to dramatic interpretations, but none as rich and far ranging as Stanley Kubrick's The Shining. In LA filmmaker Rodney Ascher's ROOM 237, we hear from people who have developed far-reaching theories and believe they have decoded the hidden symbols and messages buried in the late director's film. Carefully examining The Shining inside out, and forwards and backwards, ROOM 237 is equal parts captivating, provocative and pure pleasure. It gives voice to the fans and scholars who espouse these theories, reworking the film to match their ideas and… More

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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 93%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"A curious and entertaining documentary."
‑ David Thomson, The New Republic
""Room 237" evolves from an ode to movie love at its most delirious to a wry examination of the crackpot mind at work."
‑ Colin Covert, Minneapolis Star Tribune
"Room 237 is about bringing a text to life through an active, prolonged, playful, or even tortured relationship to it. It's a document of immersive obsession."
‑ Landon Palmer, Film School Rejects
"It has the same entertainment value as listening to a late-night radio host indulge his listeners on Roswell, Area 51 and 9/11. Everything sounds completely crackers, until it all makes crazy sense."
‑ Katherine Monk,
"...all about the work of criticism - finding fresh avenues of delight."
‑ Philip Martin, Arkansas Democrat-Gazette
"The human brain is a marvellously suggestible organ."
‑ Peter Howell, Toronto Star
"There's enough real evidence supporting the theory that Kubrick was a genius, and that's pretty entertaining all by itself."
‑ John Anderson, Newsday
"Inelegant in the way it assembles all this stuff ... but anyone who's ever obsessed over the subtext of a beloved movie will find it amusing."
‑ Eric D. Snider,
"What emerges from Room 237 is not a denigration of conspiracies, but a kind of celebration of our ability to create patterns where (perhaps) none exist."
‑ Chris Knight, National Post
"Watching it makes you feel like you're attending a really entertaining film class where your classmates confidently let their freak flags fly."
‑ Chris Hewitt (St. Paul), St. Paul Pioneer Press
"[A] strange, frustrating, occasionally fascinating doc ..."
‑ Rick Groen, Globe and Mail
"It's about the human need for stuff to make sense - especially overpowering emotional experiences - and the tendency for some people to take that sense-making to extremes."
‑ Ty Burr, Boston Globe
"An intellectual exercise, and an entertaining one, especially for those who don't want to label The Shining as just a ghost story."
‑ John Serba,
""Room 237" could become an essential companion piece to "The Shining" from now on. For those who see both, it will be impossible to think about one without the other."
‑ Jeffrey M. Anderson, San Francisco Examiner
"It's an essay about the human need to reject the notion of a random universe and find order and meaning in existence. These people are developing their own creation myths, with Kubrick the mastermind responsible for the Intelligent Design."
‑ John Beifuss, Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
More reviews for Room 237 on Rotten Tomatoes