Free Essays - Anthony Burgess' A Clockwork Orange


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"A Clockwork Orange" is a very different movie.  It has everything a movie should have, but the plot is quite disturbing, especially for the time it came out.  I have personally watched this film several times to find the meaning, and every time I watch it I come up with a different one.  I am going to try to explain what this film contains as well as try to explain the plot.
 "A Clockwork Orange" is a story of a young man whose principle interests are rape, ultra-violence, and Beethoven.  It's about a teen named Alex (Malcolm McDowell) who torments people in Britain in the near future.  He is then betrayed by his friends and caught by the police, after he had murdered somebody.  He was sent to live in a Juvenile Facility where he had to endure a strange torture of being forced to watch horrific movies.  When Alex gets home, all the people that had done him wrong had their revenge on a weak, recuperating Alex.  I'll let you find out what happened at the end =).  "A Clockwork Orange" is a cult classic.  It was Stanley Kubrick's 2nd Critically acclaimed film (the first being "Spartacus").  I was first interested in the book by Anthony Burgess (which in my opinion, is equally as good as the movie).
 "A Clockwork Orange" contains only a few of the element that can make a good film.  One of them  is the makeup.  Alex and his gang (droogs) all where a makeup when they go out and do there thing.  It gives them all a look of insanity and makes them look disturbed.  I think that this was well done because it gives you a feeling of fear.  Being afraid of a character in a movie is an excellent way to get to know them.
 Another element used is the script.  Stanley Kubrick used the same special language used in the book.  A lot of the words have no real meaning and you still know what they mean.  The context the words are used in is very much like the book.  Doing this, the book comes to life on the screen.  I always enjoy watching a movie the follows the book so close because it doesn't change the story.
 Another is the theme.  The theme of "A Clockwork Orange" is very hard to explain.  However, it still has one if not many.  As I stated before, every time I watch it I get something else out of it.

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  That could be why it is such a good film.  The first time I watched the movie I found that it was trying to say that not every cure is a good one.  The second time I found that if you change your friends may look at you different.  I think that the theme may be different to everybody.
 Lastly, the film uses great actors.  The way that Malcolm McDowell can speak the language so fluently, astounds me.  I don't know anyone who could pick up that language so quickly and do it so well.  There is one part of the film that he's being questioned by the doctor and he's told to say the first thing that comes to his head when he sees a picture, he looks at it and says, "No time for the old in-out Love, I've just come to read the meter."  I think that that is one of the funniest parts because you are so used to seeing him beat and rape people.
 "A Clockwork Orange" uses many of the basic film techniques.  The film transition used throughout the entire movie is a just a cut.  It jumps from one scene to the next.  The dissolve and wipe are not used.  But, the cut is good enough for this movie.  However, in one scene Alex is with two young ladies and the film is sped up while they do their thing, which is the extent of the special effects.
 The lighting in this film is mostly low key to add to the mood.  This is especially true when the gang is out beating and raping or even just hanging out at the Milk Bar.  The end of the movie is high key to make Alex seem like a better person because of his treatment.  The director also uses a close-up shot when Alex is talking or thinking.  I believe this is done so you can get a feel for what he is saying.
 This film is definitely a science-fiction film for a few reasons.  The setting is in the future.  You can tell this because they say they are driving a classic '99 Durango, 1999 is done with and for something to be a classic it has to withstand some time.  The doctor uses a special drug to fix Alex's mind and mind control is always part of science-fiction.  The way things are done and look also give it a science fiction look and feel.
 This film screams humanities.  The whole movie is about society and culture.  It was originally rated NC-17 because people thought it would be too much for society.  It was also banned in several countries because of it's rape and viol;ence and views.  It does contain some relevence to my life because I have changed very much over the years and some of my friends have turned on me but I still have my roots stuck in my head.
 This film says a lot about it's culture and time period.  It was needed by society to show them that things that control your mind aren't always the best.  I think that society rejected because of the way it was brought to them.  "A Clockwork Orange", when it first came out, was rated NC-17 (X) because of rape, violence, and nudity.  I believe that for it's time this movie was rated very fairly.  Now the movie is rated R.  The movie is about a gang that goes around, kill, rape, and vandalize.  Without the sexual content and violence, the movie wouldn't be a movie.  All of these things are needed to establish a plot.  I think this movie is perfect the way it is because it builds the characters and plot so well that it would be hard to edit anything out .  And it wouldn't follow the book as well if you cut parts of the movie out.  The film was so well done that someone wants to remake it.
 I feel that this film is a classic film.  The plot is one that still exist today.  You screw up, go to jail or mental institution, and you feel remorse.  This film will teach it's lesson for all time.  Besides that, the actors and directors make the book  come to life.  To compare "A Clockwork Orange" to another movie would be like comparing an apple to a piece of steel, it doesn't make sense.  The only thing it can be compared to is itself. 
 This film was nominated for best picture, best director, and best screenplay.  I believe that it deserves the awards for best director and best screenplay because it was so well done.  If I hadn't seen or read "A Clockwork Orange" I wouldn't be the same person I am today.


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