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What You Never Noticed Is In Almost Every Shot Of The Shining

Few horror films have ever achieved the sort of unbridled reverie frequently bestowed upon Stanley Kubrick's legendary 1980 creeper "The Shining." Adapted from Stephen King's beloved book of the same name, that film found the troubled Torrance family (Jack, Wendy, and young Danny) looking to put themselves back together after Jack's (Jack Nicholson) drinking led to a horrific incident with Danny (Danny Lloyd). Hoping some time away from their city lives might do cure their many ails, Jack convinces Wendy (Shelley Duvall) to spend the offseason taking care of an isolated mountain retreat known as the Overlook Hotel. 

By now, most of you know things do not go well for the Torrances once they take charge of the Overlook, with sinister supernatural forces pushing Jack to do some very bad things. Immaculately rendered, beautifully acted, and horrifying in ways words cannot convey, "The Shining" has rightfully served as the gold standard for horror cinema since its release, with many genre purists believing only one movie bests it in terms of scares.

As such, much as already been said of Stanley Kubrick's twisted tale of supernatural psychosis, with neophytes and elitists alike seeking to crack the film's sinister cinematic code. En route, many have found color plays a telling role in Kubrick's film, with one color in particular popping up in virtually every shot of "The Shining."  

Any screening of The Shining will have fans seeing lots of red

Kubrick diehards likely know he utilized specific color palettes to depict various states of being in virtually all of his color films from "2001: A Space Odyssey" to "Eyes Wide Shut." As for "The Shining," it'll hardly come as a shock to learn the color red was more than prominent throughout the film. The expressive color's presence was recently explored in detail by Scary Studies, who note the film's shifting color palette correlates with the crumbling psyche of Nicholson's deeply disturbed daddy, portending his shocking turn to axe-wielding insanity. As utilized by Kubrick in "The Shining," red becomes a harbinger of impending doom permeating every almost corner of the cursed Overlook as if blood itself were seeping through the haunted structure's every crevice. 

The culmination of that dramatic color palette is depicted in one of the film's most iconic scenes, when blood literally spills through the bright red doors of an elevator. As unforgettable as that scene is, the color is far more integral from a narrative standpoint in "The Shining" in the men's room of the hotel bar, where the walls are painted a vibrant red. That is, after all, where many believe Jack fully gives over to the blood-lusting spirits within the hotel and possibly those already within himself. 

The next time you're sitting down to endure another blood-curdling screening of "The Shining," see how much red you can spot before, ya know, the red stuff really starts to flow.