Tiny But Important Details About Horror Classic 'The Shining' Fans Might Have Missed

Still from 'The Shining' showing Jack Torrance in satanic pose
reddit | Real-Thangs

As Spooky Season nears its zenith, there's no better time to bust out some classic horror films. If teen slashers aren't your thing, there's no shortage of more psychological horror movies out there — and Stanley Kubrick's The Shining, based on the novel by Stephen King, is one of the best.

The movie and its production are both full of wild stories, so we've compiled some of the best for you here.

It set a world record.

Still from 'The Shining' showing Dick, Danny and Wendy
IMDB | Warner Bros.

Kubrick was obsessive in how he shot scenes, and one such scene — the one where Dick Halloran talks with Danny — was shot 148 times. That's enough to set the Guinness record for most retakes for a scene with dialogue.

There's foreshadowing in this shot.

Still from 'The Shining' showing Danny talking to Dick
IMDB | Warner Bros.

In that scene that was shot and reshot so many times, you can see a wide shot with a bunch of knives pointing right at Danny's head. It happens immediately after Danny asks Dick whether he's scared of the Overlook.

Jack Torrance knows his history.

Still from 'The Shining' showing Jack Torrance reading about the hotel
reddit | bearsbeetsbakugou

Jack Torrance can be seen reading up on the history of the Overlook Hotel early in the movie. Later on, when he recognizes one of the hotel's ghosts, Jack tells him that he saw his face in an old newspaper clipping.

Kubrick went overboard on this scene.

Still from 'The Shining' showing Dick Halloran
reddit | amorphousamphibian

This slow zoom-in of Dick Halloran, played by Scatman Crothers, wasn't a long scene. But Kubrick shot it again and again, more than 60 times in all, which eventually caused Crothers to break down and start crying.

The elevators had a real-life inspiration.

Comparison showing the elevator in 'The Shining' with its real-life inspiration
reddit | [deleted]

The creepy elevators that spill blood into the lobby were envisioned by Kubrick after he stayed at the Ahwanee resort in Yosemite. The resort features elevators that are a dead ringer for what's seen in the film.

That isn't real snow.

Stills from 'The Shining' showing the snowy hedge maze
reddit | bekerbeker

The final scenes in the film take place during a raging blizzard, and the next day the grounds are covered in snow. The prop department worked hard to create the illusion, using hundreds of tons of salt and crushed styrofoam to approximate snow.

They snuck blood into the trailer.

Still from 'The Shining' showing the elevators spilling blood
reddit | Stonewalled89

Kubrick really wanted to show the bloody elevator scene in the trailer, but this would have been impossible because it shows so much blood. Kubrick told censors that it was just rusty water, his ruse worked, and the shot was included in official trailers.

Jack's shirt hints at his past.

Still from 'The Shining' showing Jack Torrance wearing a 'Stovington' shirt
reddit | [deleted]

Early in the film, Jack can be seen wearing a 'Stovington' t-shirt. Although it isn't referenced in the film, the novel extensively discusses how Stovington was the private school Jack taught at before he was fired.

Where's the maze?

Still from 'The Shining' showing exterior shot with no hedge maze
reddit | [deleted]

The hedge maze obviously plays a pivotal role in the film's conclusion, but in the opening shots — which show the hotel's entire property — the hedge is nowhere to be seen. Knowing Kubrick, this was likely an intentional choice rather than an oversight.

Jack had some risque reading material.

Still from 'The Shining' showing Jack Torrance reading a 'Playgirl' magazine
reddit | nelsonic1990

In this scene early in the film, Jack Torrance can be seen reading a Playgirl magazine. Does this mean he's gay? It could, but there's an article in the issue he's reading about incest — just one of many clues that he's been abusing his son.

The maze doesn't make sense.

Stills from 'The Shining' showing that there are different layouts for the hedge maze
reddit | 3i3e3achine

Kubrick endeavored to make the Overlook Hotel big and confusing, with corridors and rooms that don't make sense. This extends to the hedge maze, which appears differently every time it's shown from an aerial perspective.

In case you doubted his true evil.

Still from 'The Shining' showing Jack Torrance in satanic pose
reddit | Real-Thangs2

The movie famously ends on a zoom-in shot showing a photo of Jack Torrance at the hotel in 1921. It's spooky enough on its own, but making things even creepier is the fact that Jack is posed in the Baphomet pose, something that's commonly associated with satanic rituals.

He made some typos.

Still from 'The Shining' showing the 'all work and no play...' typewritten sheet
reddit | Royalzed23

On the famous typewritten "All work and no play..." sheet, there's some variation to how the words are typed and spaced. In fact, there's one line that reads "All work and no play makes Jack ADULT boy."

There's an homage to an old movie.

Stills comparing 'The Phantom Carriage' and 'The Shining'
reddit | jromeit

Stanley Kubrick is a film buff who was known to include references to his favorite movies in his work. In The Shining, you can see how one of the sequences is a shot-for-shot remake of the old Swedish movie The Phantom Carriage.

What does the typewriter mean?

Jack famously types "All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy" repeatedly on his typewriter. Pay close attention and you'll see that his typing does indeed sync up with what's written on the paper.

Has Jack been secretly drinking?

Still from 'The Shining' showing Jack Torrance talking to bartender
reddit | xosherry

Jack Torrance is supposed to be a reformed alcoholic who slips back into drinking. Wendy confirms that he quit drinking the last time he hurt his son. But in a conversation with the bartender, Jack says he hurt his son three years ago — and toasts to five months on the wagon. This implies that he was secretly drinking.

The door was seriously thick.

Still from 'The Shining' showing Jack Torrance breaking down the door
reddit | Stonewalled89

To build tension, it takes Jack awhile to break down the door with an axe. But because Jack Nicholson was good with an axe in real life, the prop door broke down too easily. They had to use a real, solid door instead.

That TV shouldn't be on.

Scene from 'The Shining' showing TV playing even though it's unplugged
reddit | stanfan114

It's hard to know what to make of this one, besides creating a subtly spooky vibe, but in the scene where Danny is watching TV in one of the hotel's big foyers, the TV is noticeably not plugged in.

Jack's shirt is a clue.

Stills from 'The Shining' showing Jack Torrance wearing green, and then red
reddit | digitalordead

Kubrick uses a subtle device to show Jack Torrance's descent into madness. In the beginning scenes, before the hotel has corrupted him, Jack is repeatedly seen wearing different shades of green. But as he loses his mind, his wardrobe changes to red.

There's a subtle hint to the horror.

Still from 'The Shining' showing a bloody handprint on woman's dress
reddit | Lamb_Shanked

Just before the scene where Jack is in the bathroom with Grady, we're treated to a shot of a sumptuous ball. If you're not paying attention, you might miss the fact that the woman in the white dress has a bloody handprint on her back.