Hardy Boys TV Show - Kubrick Maze?
June 29, 2014 10:22 PM   Subscribe

I was watching the first episode of The Hardy Boys (1977) with opening credits showing them running into a large labyrinth with camera panning above.

This opening changed later on (not sure when) and they got rid of the maze. I am curious if this arguably pedestrian show might have influenced a great filmmaker for his film. I couldn't find any mention online and it is a rather silly question I must admit, but I couldn't help but see a similarity and stranger things have happened. I love The Shining, *but* unlike many film buffs am not well-versed in the theories, makings-of, or other things about Kubrick's ideas. (I even fell asleep during Room 237.)
posted by chicaboom to Media & Arts (4 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
I can tell you that there wasn't a hedge maze in King's novel, although there were aggressive, possessed topiary animals, and there wasn't a hedge maze at Timberline Lodge, which was used for the exterior Overlook Hotel shots. So the hedge maze came from somewhere. (I did read somewhere that the reason for hedge maze versus angry topiary was a concern that the special effects wouldn't work.)
posted by gingerest at 10:33 PM on June 29, 2014 [1 favorite]

Thanks for that link! I haven't seen those credits since I was a tiny, tiny person. They used to creep me out so bad!

Apparently Kubrick did have some enthusiasm for mainstream, pop culture stuff, so it's not that he COULDN'T have watched this show and been inspired by the maze. But I don't know, topiary mazes are a real thing. I suspect it was more that he wandered into a real maze once and thought, "Huh. This is creepy."

I've always wondered if it was really the effects that kept him from bringing the topiary animals to life. It's easier from me to imagine him looking over the storyboards and having second thoughts because the scene wouldn't quite fit the tone of the rest of the film, and might look kind of silly. If you think about that point in the film, Jack Torrance is the real monster. There are glimpses of ghosts and stuff, but the psycho daddy with the ax is the truly terrifying thing. If Danny ran into the snow and the topiary animals came to life, I think it would have to be very brief, like a glimpse of them lurching at him. Anything else would be too distracting from the REAL threat, you know?
posted by Ursula Hitler at 1:51 AM on June 30, 2014 [1 favorite]

Hedge mazes have been around for 450 years.

One example Kubrick would probably have been familiar with was in the Disney version of Alice in Wonderland - I'd assume he'd be much more likely to have seen that one.
posted by pipeski at 2:01 AM on June 30, 2014

Thanks again all for your musings! I realize hedge mazes have been around as long as oxygen, but the proximity of that scene (merely a few years before) and the camera shot with the creep factor, and two kids running into the maze....that was what I was getting at so I'm going to entertain the thought that it was possible (though not sure of high percentage) along with other answers (such as Alice) above since there doesn't seem to be anything out there saying one way or the other in terms of probability.
posted by chicaboom at 9:26 AM on June 30, 2014 [1 favorite]

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