Saturday, August 13, 2011

Movie Review: A Clockwork Orange, Directed by Stanley Kubrick

In future Britain, charismatic delinquent Alex DeLarge is jailed and volunteers for an experimental aversion therapy developed by the government in an effort to solve society's crime problem... but not all goes to plan. (Synopsis from IMDB)

One of the films that I reviewed for my class was A Clockwork Orange. It is a very unique film that is based on the novel by Anthony Burgess. It is not the typical setting because it brings in many elements that create a futuristic feel. The props that were used really contributed to the feel of the film. Along with the props were the costumes and makeup design, which were very interesting and helped to create the feel. Malcolm McDowell, as Alex, would occasionally have a pattern painted on his right eye and the clothing was very different from the typical styles. Some were similar to the feel of the 60's or 70's (in my idea), but with a twist that made it also seem like they were in a future time. For example, one of the women in the film wore a type of leotard that resembled ones that were popular during the time the film was created.

The film, A Clockwork Orange, shows that free will is one of the most important attributes of a human being. The film focuses on the controversiality of removing free will and the effects that it can have. Both Burgess and Kubrick wanted to show that although forced reform may seem like a good idea, taking away a person's free will can do more damage than it's worth. Without free will, a person is more like a robot. The ability to choose the path to take, whether morale or not, is what makes people who they are. The editors at SparkNotes believe that the film also shows “the inherent evil of government because the government is only concerned with its own stability and tries to suppress free will. (SparkNotes Editors, 2005)”

My general appreciation for film was really enhanced from viewing A Clockwork Orange. It is artful and worthwhile to watch for the theme and techniques. Stanley Kubrick did a wonderful job writing the screenplay and directing the film. He really brings out the elements that make the story, such as the language, dress, and d├ęcor. I was stunned while watching this film due to all of the elements. The first time that I viewed this film, I had not previously read the book and had just stumbled upon the film. While viewing, I often found myself gaping at the screen because I found it so interesting and yet unbelievable. It is absolutely necessary to have multiple viewings of A Clockwork Orange to fully grasp the ideas being presented and to have a better experience.

A Clockwork Orange is enjoyable to watch because it is so unique and really brings life to the characters that Anthony Burgess originally created. The film is really ahead of its time as far as the set and costume design. It was very well designed and structured to give it the feel that many have come to enjoy. Although it is a controversial film, it is very enjoyable to watch how the story progresses and the characters change. The language is something that I find interesting as well because it is also different from other films. Many of the characteristics that make A Clockwork Orange a great film are due to the uniqueness that has been described.


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