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It's hard to judge a film such as this. Its cold and hard, yet can be
exhilarating and sarcastic. It can be average, yet it can be visionary.
Exploitive? Satirical? Too many questions to consider when one watches
Even after 34 years, this film still speaks volumes about our current culture, which many ideals are ringing true today. The younger generations are out of control due to lack of parental control, junk culture is becoming commonplace, violence is desensitizing the masses, and we all seem to be enjoying the ride on the way down. It's very difficult to find movies which can make such startling commentary, yet hold on to such accusations for an extended period of time. Nowadays, films are focused-grouped to death, conformity is more powerful than artistry, and money is far more important than quality. Kubrick took a huge leap with this film, challenging society to take a hard look at itself. Unfortunately, society wasn't ready for this film, which is why it is revered now more than ever.
A Clockwork Orange is the finest film that has ever been made, in my view.
Stanley Kubrick has made so many masterpieces, and is by far the best
director that ever graced our world. A Clockwork Orange is simply his finest
The film grabs you and glues you to your seat from start to finish. Malcolm McDowell gives us a shining example of superior acting, and the movie is as perverted as any of Kubrick's masterpieces (and then some!). It contains horrifying violence, extreme emotions, perversity and weirdness at it's very worst. It all boils down to serve you a plethora of thoughts for you to take with you and contemplate, after the film ends.
However, with all the perversity bursting out of this film, you will probably NOT like this film the first time you see it. I know I didn't. Fortunately, I gave it a second chance, and thought: Hey, it was actually not bad at all. After the third time, I was lost for words.
After the fourth time, there was little doubt in my mind, that this was the finest film ever made, and regardless of how many great masterpieces I see, A Clockwork Orange still towers above them. I'm sure you'll agree, if you give it the chance it deserves, although it may require for you to see it more than once.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Stanely Kubrick's "A Clockwork Orange" is one of the first movies that proved that cinema can be the most enlightening and amazing art form around. Movies have always been a true love for me, but it wasn't until this film challenged me that I fell deeply in love. The first viewing left me speechless, unable to describe how weird and terrible I felt. I thought it was the film that left me in this mood, so of course that was the easy target to blame. It was just a bad movie, overrated and stupid and a waste of time. But upon further thought, I realised the film did exactly what it was supposed to. It showed how the world can be a weird and horrible place, and how this young man who goes around torturing people and being a wicked person ultimately doesn't have to pay for what he does. And it's funny too. So this film brilliantly satirises this world, showcasing pure evil and people who ordinarily do not perform such evil are forced to laugh and observe what we all hate to admit is the truth. It's sick, but at the same time brilliant. And when one gets down to the core, you can't really explain it. It just is what it is. It's real. No one really sees it very often, but it is out there and everyone knows. And no one does anything about it. In essence, "A Clockwork Orange" is the ultimate satire, and one of the ultimate film experiences. It's art, it's life, and in a funky way, it's entertaining.
I would say that the movie is really a gem of an art piece. The use of
excellent imagery coupled with pretty out-of-the-place background score
tells us about the uniqueness of this movie. Stanley Kubrick has really
applied a lot of thought into this.
The director wants the audience to feel something as bad not because he is showing it as bad but because it really is bad. The background music accompanying the ultra violent scenes is comical, and not dramatic or anything else that is commonly associated with such scenes. This gives the viewer an opportunity to feel the bitterness not because the music hints so but because he himself feels so. Viewer's emotions should arise irrespective of what the director is trying to show, and this is one of the greatest successes of the movie.
Another glorifying feature is the central idea of the movie. If a human is striped of the choice to choose from good and evil, he no longer remains a human, he becomes a clockwork. When Alex is brain-washed and "programmed" to choose only good, he wasn't accepted by the society and this shows the irony in the objectives of the British Government. The word Orange from the title presumably comes from the word "Ourange" that loosely means man. And hence the title is so appropriate to the movie.
The artificiality in dialogues and sets give the movie a unique feature and enhance the grip on it. This also means that the viewer has to get more involved. This is definitely one of the best technically shot movies, another masterpiece of Kubrick like the Space Oddessey.
For the uninitiated, set in near future Britain, the movie shows Malcom MacDowell as the head of a group of youngsters involved in sexual violence. Turn of the events leave the protagonist in the hands of the police. Worried by the growing number of prisoners the British Government devises a method of "programming" them so that they always choose the good. Alex is chosen as one of those on which the new system is to be tested. The rest unfolds as a saga of the very human characteristic.
Lastly, I would like to say that you may be compelled to leave the movie in between, but if you are watching it for art and cinematic experience, I recommend you to sit through.
Few films are as sensational or infamous as Stanley Kubrick's "A
Clockwork Orange". It's impossible to sit through ACO and not have a
reaction; whether it be shock, disgust or amazement. The savage tale of
a brutal young droog and his subsequent "reformation" by the government
is as shocking and thought-provoking as ever.
While the film's depictions of violence and sex are what it's most known for, ACO works on far deeper levels. The disturbing portrayal of youth and its satirical depiction of a government's attempts to create a better society are brilliant, but the most fascinating aspect of ACO is the questions it poses about good and evil. While the crimes Alex commits at the beginning of the film are atrocious, what the government does to him is worse. The film presents the absolute worst aspects of man, but shows that even these are still favorable to a man without the choice. People can denounce the film because of its brutal content, but the importance of the questions it poses can't be denied.
Equally excellent to the film's content is the effort by the crew. Kubrick's perfectionism pays off well, as ACO in one of his most visually striking films. Malcolm MacDowell is nothing short of amazing as Alex. Kubrick's use of surreal imagery and set pieces, as well as the ingenious use of music to compliment the on-screen action, creates a world that perfectly reflects the protagonist's behavior and the government's policies.
A Clockwork Orange is by no means an easy film to get through, as many will be turned off by the scenes of violence and rape. But this masterpiece is far more complex than a simple romp through a world of youthful violence. It's a rare example of film-making that demands that the viewer actually think. Real horrorshow all around, Oh my brothers.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
To say that the Alex character from Stanley Kubrick's "A Clockwork
Orange" is unlikable is like saying the Manson family was sort of bad.
He's not just unlikable; he's despicable, terrifying, sick, twisted,
and ultimately a haunting embodiment of all our greatest realistic
fears and worries. But Alex does not see himself as a sick person. The
key to this is in his voice-over narrative.
Alex does not see himself as a pervert, just as we do not see our own flaws and Ramond Babbitt did not see his own autism. To us, we are all normal, which is a scary thought.
"A Clockwork Orange," which was originally released in 1973 after an appeal for an R rating (that was granted after originally being tagged as an X-rated motion picture), had been banned from Britain for close to thirty years. Most film fans in Europe will tell you that they had seen the movie on grainy bootleg videotapes years ago when they were young and curious.
But for those of us lucky enough to enjoy (or squirm through) "A Clockwork Orange" in its entire odd splendor, it is an experience you are likely to never forget. Its characters, its style, its subject matter, its explicit material--all of it combines to create a marvelous whole that will stay with you long after the credits stop rolling.
Essentially a tale focused on Alex's journeys in jail and his process of being re-submitted to the world after inhumane treatments to cure the evil out of him, "A Clockwork Orange" is indeed as offbeat as its title.
All tales of redemption involve characters that we gradually come to appreciate, or like, or--at the very least--learn to tolerate. Not "A Clockwork Orange." Our narrator remains the same throughout the movie, always an incarnation of everything wrong in today's modern world. He goes through no cleansing process and by the end of the film we like him less than we did at the beginning. That's daring.
i just saw this movie about a day ago, and it completely blew me away, namely the main character, protagonist, hero? Alex. we love, hate, and or just plain utterly confused about how we feel of Alex. Alex is the greatest villain ever because he is ourselves, he is the worst of ourselves. hes the deep dark place inside you that rises to the surface eventually, and then pushed down just as fast because it terrifies you. the way Alex stares into the camera in the first scene just freaks me out, he has a little smirk on his face that seems to say you may hate me, but you'll never be rid of me, because there can never be good without the bad, and i am the bad.
A disturbing but yet very beautiful piece of film-making, Kubrick has created the ultimate study of mind manipulation in this film. It is a protest against reform programs that take away freedom of a choice, and the message of the film in terms of paying for one's sins in all eternity is inescapable, evident to a large extent in the sardonic nature of the tale. Although set in the future, it hardly feels like it is, this being because the message of the film is overwhelmingly powerful and capable of applying to any age. The film has a number of possible hidden meanings to it a feat equaled on scale only by Kubrick's former film '2001: A Space Odyssey'. Besides for the meaning behind the film, there are still the marks of a masterpiece. Kubrick's direction is superb alongside the good photography, capturing shadows and angles needed to establish tone. The editing is excellent too, done in a flashy, brainwashing style at times to have relevance to the film. The choice of cast is again inspirational, however the film achieves the most in terms of music. Kubrick manages to use one of the earliest forms of art, classical music, and give it an unforgettable style and importance in the film. It is truly a difficult task to explain what is so great about a film such as 'A Clockwork Orange' it is maybe best explained by watching the film itself.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
A CLOCKWORK ORANGE (1971) ****
Starring: Malcolm McDowell, Patrick Magee, Michael Bates, Warren Clarke, and Adrienne Corri Written and Directed by Stanley Kubrick 137 minutes Rated R (for strong explicit sexual content and rape, perverse nudity, brutal violence, and some language)
By Blake French:
Stanley Kubrick's "A Clockwork Orange" holds the recent record of being the number one film of all time on my charts. The film is everything that you'll never want to watch. The scenes are disturbing, gut wrenching, mind twisting, and way over the top. In result, "A Clockwork Orange" has the most powerful and overwhelming dramatic impact that I have ever experienced in a mainstream film.
"A Clockwork Orange" is the story of a young man named Alex DeLarge, who is, by day, a regular student who lives with his parents at home, but, by night, a homicidal rapist/killer with his accomplices who dress up like demented clowns at a bleak freak show. He and his buddies weasel their way into the happy homes housing innocent people by chanting the same deceiving phrase every night: they scream that their friend has been critically wounded in an accident near by--and plead to use their telephone to call for help.
For a few unfortunate souls, this devious trick proves to be successful in nature. One night, however, a woman known as "The Cat Lady," refuses their plead, and calls the police in suspicion. Alex, being both smart and sneaky, somehow manages to break into this perverted woman's home, while his accomplices wait outside. Once indoors, a fight begins. A struggle featuring a sex toy owned by "Cat Lady," one that not only causes panicked arousal, but also is featured as the weapon of her graphic and disturbing murder. Alex quickly flees the scene once the police sirens reach his shaky ears, but when he gets back to his pal's waiting outside, they return their experiences with him by bashing him over the head with a hard object, allowing their jumbled escape, but his certain demise.
After the process of being sent to prison, Alex grows to learn to tell offices and guards what they like to hear. He reads the bible, is never involved with any major fights or complications, and almost volunteers for a new kind of experiment. An experiment so probationary it is still being tested and held under wraps. What it does, though a series of "sessions," is cure a violent individual from his sickness; he will feel terrible pain if involved in any sort of violence after the medicine takes place.
The scenes involving the "cure" of Alex's disturbances are truly emotionally troublesome. They are so explicit and detailed that I myself felt tempted to look away from the screen at points. This is not a film for those who are prone to walk out of movies, those who are easily offended, or especially for those with week stomachs. This is the most grizzly enumerated film I have even screened, but it happens to be one of the most perfect and precise in message. I definitely don't recommend the production to everyone, though.
The soundtrack to "A Clockwork Orange" is one of the most inspirational and spirited ones I have ever heard; right up there with the turns to "The Graduate" (1967). Although the actual music is far from fitting each individual scene, the overall presence is not only worth listening to, but also worth the purchase price.
Here, a young Malcolm McDowell explores the character of a lifetime with vivid imagination and tremendous description. His character fits him very well as an actor. Even though the character is meant to be despised, I couldn't help but to be very convinced and interested in his sick, demented, psychotic mind. Most of this is because of the flawless point of view the film contains, one that both provokes empathy and involvement. It investigates the mind of a killer, rapist, and a confused, somewhat harmless, adolescent--all existing in the same character. This is no doubt the character, and the performance, that inspired a generation.
As well as being a movie of violent and sexual repulsion, Stanley Kubrick's direction to "A Clockwork Orange" also forces us to investigate deep down in ourselves and chew on the idea of us being in the character's shoes. There is a scene in this movie that forces two parents to make a decision of a lifetime. After receiving the treatments he volunteered for, Alex returns to his household only to discover that the only mom and dad he's even known have rented his old room out to some strange college kid, who is said to have been there for them during many hard times--like a real son. His parents must make a choice: to throw their only son, who has suffered for years in turn for making others suffer, out of the house for good, or allow him to return with open arms trusting that he is "cured." Well, dear reader, what would you do? Brought to you by Warner Bros.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
This is just possibly the most "perfect" movie ever made. There is no meaningless dialog; not a single extraneous character; and every plot twist is rational and reasonable. Not to mention a superb soundtrack. Because of the intense violence, particularly against women, it is a disturbing and difficult film to sit through. But if you care about the cinema, you must watch without interruption! Characters get what they deserve...in the beginning and at the climax. Let Kubrick take you on the emotional rollercoaster of your cinematic life. And don't forget to breathe.
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