Of the collection of theories, I personally found one to have some potential merit: a statement on the slaughter of Native Americans by Americans. Much unlike the other ideas presented, there is actually a good amount of visual and verbal support for this theory. The remaining eighty minutes of the film cover all manners of absurdity ranging from a stapler on a desk representing an erection to the possibility that the film may be Kubrick personally admitting to his wife that he is responsible for the faked moon landing. While funny at first, in a feature length film of crackpot theory after crackpot theory, the joke gets old pretty quickly.
The bigger question that Room 237 raises is: what was Kubrick’s true motivation behind altering so much of Stephen King’s source material?The bigger question that Room 237 raises is, of course, what was Kubrick’s true motivation behind altering so much of Stephen King’s source material? It seems pretty obvious that Kubrick saw the potential for a fantastic story about cabin fever (and very much not alcoholism) and made a wonderful film that may have had no supernatural elements outside of the minds of its mentally disturbed protagonists. Whether or not he added visual elements to hint at greater themes is irrelevant; he made a great film. If you agree with that general sentiment, then you will likely enjoy Room 237. Even if the theories presented are a bit crazy, the enthusiasm of those who present them definitely stimulates the imagination.
Room 237 is currently playing at Coolidge Corner Theater.