- A CLOCKWORK ORANGE
- Film (1971). Polaris/Warner Bros. Dir Stanley KUBRICK, starring Malcolm McDowell, Patrick Magee, Warren Clarke, Michael Bates, Aubrey Morris. Screenplay Kubrick, based on A CLOCKWORK ORANGE (1962) by Anthony BURGESS. 137 mins. Colour.This controversial adaptation of Burgess's novel about mind control tells of Alex (McDowell), a teenage thug in a tawdry NEAR FUTURE - dehumanizing and luridly presented - who is cured of his violent ways by a sadistic form of aversion therapy. It was the (arguable) glamorizing of Alex's anarchic sex and violence (in contrast to the book) that provoked so much angry reaction in the media, though otherwise Kubrick's adaptation is moderately faithful. The film is not in fact amoral, though its moral is controversial: ACO is a religious allegory with a FRANKENSTEIN theme - it warns humankind not to try to compete with God - but Burgess reverses the theme, showing it to be as evil to unmake a monster, by removing his free will, as to make one. ACO is an intensely visual tour de force, deploying clinically a spectrum of powerful cinematic effects. As in Kubrick's 2001: A SPACE ODYSSEY, some sequences were rendered even more disturbing by the use of MUSIC contrasting wildly with the visual content, most famously in Alex's rendition of "Singing in the Rain" while kicking in the ribs of the husband of a woman he is about to rape.ACO received the 1972 HUGO for Best Dramatic Presentation.JB/PN
Science Fiction and Fantasy Encyclopedia. Academic. 2011.