10 Subliminal Messages Hidden In Popular Movies


Star Wars 

While it may be easy to say any film with a quote unquote “chosen one” is based on the story of Jesus, there’s much more than that in Star Wars that reinforces Christian beliefs and teachings. For example, Anakin demonstrates several of the deadly sins, particularly pride and anger, which set him on the path to the dark side. Despite his terrible sins, Luke never loses faith in his father and Anakin ultimately redeems himself by sacrificing his life for his son’s. It was Luke’s strong faith and forgiveness that saved his own life and his father’s immortal soul. Preach it George. 

The Departed 

When the characters start dropping like flies in The Departed, you really begin to feel like anyone could be next. However there are visual cues placed throughout that let you know which characters are going to get nixed. Scorsese placed X’s throughout the film, usually appearing behind characters who have an axe over their head. This is no coincidence, especially when you consider that one never appears behind Dignam, who’s pretty much the only one who gets out alive. This is also Scorsese’s nod to Howard Hawks Scarface, a 1932 film in which an X appears onscreen whenever a murder is about to occur. 

The Shining 

If you break it down, The Shining is probably one of the densest horror film ever made. Kubrick crafted a layered film that has inspired hundreds of interpretations and theories, some more far fetched than others. One that many seem to agree on is the underlying theme of the European’s genocide against Native Americans that has gone unpunished. It’s mentioned early on that the hotel was built over an Indian burial ground, an offence they seem proud of as images of native americans and native american art are placed throughout the hotel. Kubrick placed subtle references to the country’s first inhabitants in everything from set decoration, to wardrobe, to the score. Some of have see the buckets of blood pouring from the elevator as literally bringing up the past buried below the hotel. It’s also no coincidence that the final image shows jack at a July 4th celebration, the holiday that best represents the European’s false claim of the land. 

X Men

If you ever wonder why the X Men movies often get caught up in the politics of Mutant Rights, that’s because the issues facing these characters and how people treat them are meant to mirror actual experiences of marginalized groups, particularly the LGBT community. It’s an issue that hits close to home for director Brian Singer, who included scenes of mutants “coming out” to  parents who react with fear and anger. Their powers usually manifest around the same time as puberty, causing many young mutants to feel shame and conceal their abilities. Colonel Stryker is the best example of the prejudices and mutant-phobia that run rampant in this world. When so many have been forced to live a lie, you can see why characters like Magneto are angry with the treatment of mutants and fight for worldwide Mutant Pride. 

Captain America: The Winter Soldier

If you’ve ever heard conspiracy theorists throw around names of organizations like Illuminati and New World Order and wonder what the heck they’re talking about, then look no further than Hydra in Captain American: Winter Soldier. When the filmmakers decided to take inspiration from political thrillers, a secret agency with tentacles in high levels of government made for the perfect villain. Like Hydra, many believe the Illuminati to be tied to post-war Nazism and is made up some of the most powerful people in the world who secretly manipulate everything. It’s been said they even employ mind control tactics. Pierce’s line in Winter Soldier about a tearing the old world down to create a better one is basically the basis for what people refer to as the New World Order. What’s fact and what’s fiction here remains to be seen.