Cincinnati Babyhead

Speaks his mind on music & movies!

Movie : A Clockwork Orange

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Four guys (Droogs) are sitting in a milk bar.  They are all dressed alike in white, black hats, jock straps and black boots.  The setting is dreamlike, futuristic.  One of the gang is narrating.  They set out from the bar for a night of raising hell (a little ultra-violence) starting with a beating of an old drunk, then a gang fight, cruising in their auto and finishing up with a break in, another beating and a rape.  Then it’s home.

The next morning the leader of the gang, Alex, is visited by his probation officer who questions him about missing school and rumors about his violent behavior.

The boys meet up the next night for more of the same but this time the rest of the Droogs want to change it up a bit as far as their course of action goes.  Alex suppresses this by laying a beating on his boys.  Now back on track they break into a house.  Things go bad, the gang turns on Alex and he gets busted.  Alex is sent to prison for fourteen years.  While doing his time he volunteers for a new treatment, experiment to cure violent criminals.

Alex completes the treatment and thinking he’s cured he’s released where he encounters the people from his violent past who put to test  his supposed cure.  Anytime he tries to resort to violence of any kind he gets physically ill.  He is eventually  pushed to  attempting suicide.  He survives and gets back to his old self.

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‘A Clockwork Orange’ was another of those films from the 70’s that CB was exposed to that influenced his taste in film.  It was an unique experience not your usual conventional film.  Babyhead loved it.  He was engaged right from the opening scene.  The whole feel and tone of the movie from the look, the music to the performances engaged CB.

This was Babyhead’s intro to Stanley Kubrick.  He creates this world with his style of film making.  He wrote the screenplay based on Antony Burgess’s novel.  The narration with the slang worked.  It wasn’t hard to like.  Cinematographer John Alcott captures Kubrick’s vision.  This wasn’t the first movie that Babyhead had seen in which music played a big part but Walter Carlos’s sound track certainly was a key element with the Beethoven angle.  CB was a rocker but he loved this sound.

So many great scenes and images throughout.  From the opening scene, the gang fight, the look of the tunnel standing over the bum and many more.  Alex’s look was also unique. Performances are memorable.  Warren Clark and James Marcus as Alex’s  droogs , Patrick Magee as the rape victim’s husband, Philip Stone as Dad are all great.  But it’s Michael Bates as the Chief guard who stood out in the supporting roles.

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Malcolm  McDowell as Alex gives a standout performance.  Totally immersed into this psychotic character.  Believable , truthful piece of work.  Really liked the way he brought humor to a role that leans toward the dark side.  Great work!

CB loved this film.  Opened up more roads to the kind of films that were out there.

Watch it and let the film and a little Ludwig van give the ‘gulliver’ a treat.

10 comments on “Movie : A Clockwork Orange

  1. Vinyl Connection
    October 31, 2016

    Nice one CB. If you do a review of the Soundtrack next (a very important one!), let me know and I’ll add it into the FILM [SOUNDTRACK] FESTIVAL I’m curating via Vinyl Connection between 1 and 14 November. Cheers.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. cincinnatibabyhead
    November 1, 2016

    Hey the comment reappeared. Thanks for that. Yeah the music in this film did the trick. Walter did a good job. All new sounds to CB but he was loving it. Enough to go and get the soundtrack. ‘William Tell Overture’ was never the same listening experience after seeing the film. Memorable and fitting music for Kubrick’s film.


  3. Tangled Up In Music
    December 19, 2016

    Yeah, this one changed everything I knew about cinema for me too. I was blown away by the meticulous construction of it – every scene seemed memorable in one way or another. I love Kubrick, but my favorite movie of his has gotta be Dr. Strangelove.

    Liked by 1 person

    • cincinnatibabyhead
      December 19, 2016

      ‘Orange’ opened the door to a whole new world of film. CB is a big Stanley fan. ‘The Killing’ if you haven’t seen it is an early one. Heist pic but Stan style (Jim Thompson helped with the writing. One of CB’s fave writers). He uses a lot of the same actors in all his films. Yeah ‘Strangelove’ is due for another viewing. Thanks for the input. (Sterling Hayden who plays General Ripper in ‘Strangelove’ is the lead in the ‘Killing’)

      Liked by 1 person

      • Tangled Up In Music
        December 19, 2016

        Yeah, need to watch The Killing. Thanks for the info.

        Liked by 1 person

      • cincinnatibabyhead
        December 19, 2016

        The Killing has a couple of CB’s all time favorite character actors. Elisha Cook Jr. Timothy Carey and Joe Turkel. It’s worth a look because its Stanley. Plus like certain musicians it influenced a lot of film makers. ‘Clockwork’ started it for me. Did you dig the music in ‘Clockwork”?

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Tangled Up In Music
    December 19, 2016

    For sure. Great use of classical music, and the same goes for Space Odyssey.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Jim S.
    May 16, 2017

    Thanks for cluing me in to the existence of this review, CB. A flick I haven’t seen in a long time. Almost impossible to believe that this is the now seventy-something McDowell played this role.

    Like another commenter, as much as I like this film, “Strangelove” is my favorite of Kubrick’s. I’ve seen it a million times. It’s incomparably brilliant.

    Liked by 1 person

    • cincinnatibabyhead
      May 16, 2017

      ‘Strangelove’ has so much to like. Kubrick really had his own style. Sterling Hayden was perfect and I love George C. Scott’s work anytime. Don’t get me going on this stuff. The image of Slim Pickens on the bomb is forever embedded in my head. The only thing missing on this ‘CO’ take was a comment from the Doctor.


      • Jim S.
        May 16, 2017

        Yes, as the final authority on everything, you may now close the discussion. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

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This entry was posted on October 30, 2016 by in 1971 film, Anthony Burgess, British Films, Crime drama, Malcolm McDowell, Stanley Kubrick, Walter Carlos and tagged .


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