As you probably already know, movies are complex projects with many different elements and moving parts. Talented directors who have made many films in Hollywood have often said you make a film three times when you write it, produce it, and then edit it. Also, the influences from all the different departments on a film set will effect the overall look, feel, and subtle messages within a film. Because of this, subliminal messages are often sewn into a film without anyone knowing it, except for the secretive group who put them in there in the first place. Only after the film has come out and is tirelessly analyzed by film fans will these subliminal messages actually take shape, if they ever do. Here we have 6 movies with subliminal messages you never even noticed.
The Fake Moon Landing Conspiracy in Stanley Kubrick's "The Shining"
Stanley Kubrick's "The Shining" is a weird, terrifying film in general and one that many people think is one of Kubrick's weakest. However, a recent analysis of the film points out all the places throughout the film that give clues as to what Kubrick was really talking about;: his experience directing the fake moon landing for the United States government. While this may seem like a far-fetched conspiracy theory, you might think differently once you actually see the evidence in the film.
Spotting Tyler Durden in "Fight Club"
Throughout the modern classic "Fight Club," David Fincher put subliminal messages in through imagery to allude to what was going to happen later in the film. Without giving up what happens later, single frames of Brad Pitt are placed throughout the film, usually when Edward Norton is onscreen.
The multiple erections and penis imagery in "The Little Mermaid"
The hit Disney children's film has one of the most shocking and unexplained subliminal messages in it: erections. There are two in particular that stand out: the priest getting an erection in the wedding scene towards the end and the fact that there is a piece of coral that looks suspiciously like an erect penis on the poster for the film, in the background. Considering every frame of the film is drawn, there is no way this is an accident.
The whispering of "Take off your clothes" in "Aladdin"
dialogue kicks in. How or why this occurred has never really been explained.
The name Kennedy appearing onscreen in "Gladiator"
In the Academy Award winning film "Gladiator," the word Kennedy appears onscreen for just one frame in specific moments. One pops up when Maximus is taken to be killed and another is when Maximus is stabbed by Commodus. Why this occurs is also unexplained by the filmmakers, but you can surmise it has to do with the assassination of president Kennedy.
The ghostly figure in "Silence of the Lambs"
When Clarice is first taken downstairs into the jail to Hannbial Lectur's cell there is, for one frame, a figure wearing a straightjacket looming in the hallway behind her. This was explained to be an extra who happened to be in the shot, but it still creates a subliminal message of her always being afraid of what is behind her.