In A Clockwork Orange, Stanley Kubrick means to make you uncomfortable. The magic of the film is that it can show terrible things and then making us care about the mind of the man responsible for them. Kubrick accomplishes this titanic task through three main techniques, each of which will be detailed in this piece: heightened stylization, a uniquely likeable non-hero in Alex, and the unification of every aspect of the film into a potent thematic statement: Free Will is sacrosanct. These aspects make A Clockwork Orange an undeniable classic film, as important today for what it reveals about humanity as it was in 1971.
As I mentioned in my State of the Blog post this month, I am planning a series of in-depth essays on the films of Stanley Kubrick. Near the end of each month, I will publish an essay on one of Kubrick’s films, and I intend these pieces to be worthy of the films that they are analyzing, not mere “reviews”. This will not be a trivial pursuit. And, I acknowledge that I may not be up to the Herculean task. Regardless, these are some of my favorite films, and I hope to enhance my enjoyment of them (and yours!) through analysis and discussion.