Stanley Kubrick's a Clockwork Orange

Stanley Kubrick's a Clockwork Orange

Stanley Kubrick's a Clockwork Orange

Stanley Kubrick's a Clockwork Orange

Synopsis

Bringing together new and critically informed essays about one of the most controversial films ever made, this collection of writings examines the literary origins of the work, the nature of cinematic violence, questions of gender and the film's treatment of sexuality, as well as the difficulties of adapting an invented language ("nadsat") for the screen. The volume also includes two contemporary and conflicting reviews by Roger Hughes and Pauline Kael, a detailed glossary of "nadsat" and reproductions of stills from the film.

Excerpt

On March 7, 1999, Stanley Kubrick died at his home outside of London after nearly completing the editing of his final film, Eyes Wide Shut. He was seventy years old and had lived a rather reclusive existence in England since 1974. Eyes Wide Shut, starring Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman, was his first film in over a decade. Following several years of planning, the actual filming had occupied Kubrick and his stars for more than 15 months. Much fanfare accompanied its release in the summer of 1999 (Cruise and Kidman were on the July 5th cover of Time magazine), but the critical response was decidedly mixed, with some critics viewing it as a “haunting, final masterpiece” and others as a disappointment. Although Kubrick had prepared a final cut of the film before his death, the studio redefined the meaning of “final cut” by adding digitalized figures optically to obscure the explicit sexual activity of one of the film's central scenes before releasing the film in America. Kubrick's brilliant career ended with controversy and debate – characteristics that had marked his output at least since the release of Lolita (1962). Why did Kubrick's films – so varied and diverse – engender such heated discussion? Few directors of his stature have produced films that have consistently provoked so much controversy.

Stanley Kubrick began as a staff photographer for Look magazine at the age of seventeen. In part because of an indifferent high school record, Kubrick chose not to attend college. But it was a high school English teacher – Aaron Traister, whom he immortalized in a Look magazine photo spread in April 1946 – who ignited his interest . . .

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