A Clockwork Orange (1971)

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Director: Stanley Kubrick
Cast: Malcolm McDowell, Michael Bates, Adrienne Corri, Patrick Magee, Warren Clarke


In a Britain of the future a young hoodlum is set up by his gang, then selected from the prison population as guinea pig in the experimentation of a new aversion therapy, which effectively instils a horror of sex and violence but also does away with free will and Beethoven.

The Review

For many years only viewable outside the UK, due to its creator's own proscription, this adaptation of a thought provoking treatise on the price to be paid for free will, couched in its highly quotable invented 'nadsat', did for violence what Kubrick's films tended to do for their subject matter: a pretty thorough job. Coming the same year as The Devils and Straw Dogs, it was too much for tabloid-led public opinion. In its own right it is a brilliant piece of filmmaking, technically commanding while being as alienating a dramatic experience as, say, a Monty Python sketch in its 'deliberateness', whether in questions of writing (the prison induction scene was an addition), performance or musical accompaniment.