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A Clockwork Orange (1971)

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In the future, a sadistic gang leader is imprisoned and volunteers for a conduct-aversion experiment, but it doesn't go as planned.

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(screenplay), (novel)
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549 ( 6)
Top Rated Movies #86 | Nominated for 4 Oscars. Another 9 wins & 19 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... Alex
... Mr. Alexander
... Chief Guard
... Dim
John Clive ... Stage Actor
... Mrs. Alexander
... Dr. Brodsky
Paul Farrell ... Tramp
... Lodger
Michael Gover ... Prison Governor
Miriam Karlin ... Catlady
James Marcus ... Georgie
... Deltoid
... Prison Chaplain
... Mum
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Storyline

Protagonist Alex DeLarge is an "ultraviolent" youth in futuristic Britain. As with all luck, his eventually runs out and he's arrested and convicted of murder and rape. While in prison, Alex learns of an experimental program in which convicts are programmed to detest violence. If he goes through the program, his sentence will be reduced and he will be back on the streets sooner than expected. But Alex's ordeals are far from over once he hits the mean streets of Britain that he had a hand in creating. Written by Nikki Carlyle

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Being the adventures of a young man ... who couldn't resist pretty girls ... or a bit of the old ultra-violence ... went to jail, was re-conditioned ... and came out a different young man ... or was he ? See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Sci-Fi

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

Release Date:

2 February 1972 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Clockwork Orange  »

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Box Office

Budget:

$2,200,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

£618,615 (United Kingdom), 19 March 2000, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$26,589,355, 31 December 1973
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

,  »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(re-issue)|

Color:

| (Warnercolor) (uncredited)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

It is often claimed that Malcolm McDowell nearly drowned when his breathing apparatus failed during filming of the waterboarding scene. This is not true. Daily records indicate that the scene was filmed in repeated takes with no stoppage from equipment failure. McDowell has never reported a near drowning, while he does report many similar close calls in other scenes. See more »

Goofs

When the two policemen try to drown Alex in the water trough, we can still hear his voice unimpeded. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Alex: There was me, that is Alex, and my three droogs, that is Pete, Georgie, and Dim, and we sat in the Korova Milkbar trying to make up our rassoodocks what to do with the evening. The Korova milkbar sold milk-plus, milk plus vellocet or synthemesc or drencrom, which is what we were drinking. This would sharpen you up and make you ready for a bit of the old ultra-violence.
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Crazy Credits

There are no opening credits after the title, which is followed by the opening shot of Alex the Droog. Although it is now commonplace for major films to not have opening credits, in 1971 it was considered rather unusual and was considered a trademark of director Stanley Kubrick. See more »


Soundtracks

Symphony No.9 in D Minor, Opus 125 Choral: II. Scherzo. Molto vivace
Written by Ludwig van Beethoven
Recorded by Deutsche Grammophon Gesellschaft
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Great Piece of Art
28 July 2004 | by See all my reviews

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.


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