Stanley Kubrick's masterpiece 'The Shining' has been studied, analyzed, and deconstructed countless times since its release in 1980. Yet, the film continues to fascinate and bemuse its audiences, seemingly revealing new hidden depths even after four decades.
In an unprecedented disclosure, renowned film scholar Filippo Ulivieri has recently claimed to have noticed a subtle yet intriguing detail in 'The Shining' that appears to have been overlooked until now.
An Unsettling Discovery
Taking to social media, Ulivieri astounded Kubrick enthusiasts with his startling revelation.
"I've noticed something odd happening in Stanley Kubrick's The Shining," he wrote. "True, there's plenty of odd things going on in The Shining, but this is really weird. I don't think anyone has ever noticed it before, because I cannot find anything about it.
No article, no video, nothing." The subject of Ulivieri's curiosity centers around Jack Nicholson's performance as the troubled protagonist, Jack Torrance. Ulivieri astutely observed that there are multiple instances throughout the film where Nicholson appears to stare directly into the camera lens, seemingly breaking character.
"I am talking about all the times in which Jack Torrance looks at the camera but there's no one to look at,” Ulivieri elaborates. This peculiar detail is unique to Nicholson's performance alone and is not repeated by any other actor in the film.
[Thread] I’ve noticed something odd happening in Stanley Kubrick’s The Shining. True, there’s plenty of odd things going on in The Shining, but this is really weird.
? 1/50 pic.twitter.com/TWcgiDruaP — Filippo Ulivieri (@nessuno2001) May 31, 2023
The Viewer: A Spectator or A Participant?
Ulivieri's investigation doesn't stop there.
He firmly believes that this odd detail is not accidental. Instead, he suggests that it is a deliberate, intentional choice made by the meticulous director himself. As evidence, he refers to a moment in the documentary 'Making the Shining', where Kubrick explicitly instructs Nicholson to look down, right where the camera is positioned.
Ulivieri proposes that with this cinematic maneuver, the viewer's role morphs from being a mere observer to an active participant in the unfolding narrative. He argues that this method of breaking the fourth wall - the imagined barrier between the film and its audience - is a unique approach employed by Kubrick.
Ghost in the Camera: A Haunting Perspective
In a haunting twist, Ulivieri puts forth an alternative interpretation of Nicholson's direct gaze into the camera. Could it be that the audience, through Nicholson's stare, embodies the spectral inhabitants of the Overlook Hotel, covertly observing the film's events? This chilling proposition certainly adds another layer of intrigue to the enigma that is 'The Shining'
While the allure of Stanley Kubrick's work is often found in its mystery, Ulivieri's recent revelation seems to deepen our intrigue, teasing out tantalizing clues from the dark recesses of this cinematic masterpiece.
And it only happens with Jack Nicholson – or Jack Torrance, that is. No other actor, and no other character in the film, does that. Only Jack.
? 15/50 pic.twitter.com/gdpHh1MYrq — Filippo Ulivieri (@nessuno2001) May 31, 2023
However, whether these mysteries should remain concealed, at least for the sake of a peaceful night's sleep, is perhaps a question best left unanswered.