A Clockwork Orange Cover 'Alternate realities' is a concept that has been used to illustrate many a good film or comic book in the past. However, is there any basis to clarify that the this type of ideology really does exist? And if it did, what would it be like? Maybe these guys might know? Director: Stanley Kubrick; or Actors: Malcolm McDowell, Warren Clarke, plus many-many more. But only in 1971, and for 136 minutes.

A Clockwork Orange: The Film - The Book

In a world unlike our own, roguish rascal, Alex (Malcome McDowell), and his gang of 'droogs', just keep on getting into trouble, all of the bleeding time. They fight - they bait - they attack - and they even rape.

Yes - I said 'rape' - Alex rape's a women in front of her husbands very eyes - and then escapes not so long after, without any remorse shown whatsoever.

But why the Hell would Alex behave in this way I wonder? Is the something to do with 'Ode to Joy'? Because it was created by a composer whom he admires, Beethoven. Or then again, is it something to do with his low sexual morals? Well, his probation officer does see him canoodling with a couple of girls in a Bristol fashion. Or better yet, is it something to do the relationship that he has with his own parents? Due to they way they treat him and his pet snake.

Ha! God only knows why Alex is the way he is! For that matter, his gang of 'droogs' haven't got a clue either! Still, I suppose that is why they leave him stranded after Alex accidentally kills a woman in her own home.


However, after this ghastly event transpires, a number of things happens to Alex that forces him to change his ways forever more. For a start, he is arrested and sent to prison for fourteen long years. Next, in prison, he quickly befriends the prison Chaplain, because suddenly Alex takes a keen interest in the Bible. And finally, because of Alex's new found religious slant, the Minister of the Interior (Anthony Sharp) arrives at the prison, and enrolls him in an experimental aversion therapy to rehabilitate criminals.

That's right - I said 'experimental'.

You see, in no time at all, Alex is induced into this program that is said to ‘cure him of his distain’. He is taken to a hospital. He is strapped into a straight jacket. And he is given injections, eyes clamps, eye-drops, and then forced to watch violent and sexual movies under duress.

OK, I know that all of this may sound strange in the scheme of things. But stranger still, is it works. Alex now can not defend himself from any external forces who oppose! Therefore, only after two weeks of this treatment, Alex is released into society, now a changed man.

Oops! Bad Idea.

Please note, this has not got anything to do with Alex directly, oh no. Rather, how the people on the outside world treat him. His parents kick him out of his home . An old drunk man whom he previously attacked beats him up. Plus his old gang, 'the droogs', kick the living sh*t out of him as well.

Now all of this may sound bad I have to admit, worst still though, is that after all this, Alex inadvertently goes to the house of the writer - the person whom Alex raped his wife.


Well, I suppose that is why what next transpires is full of ambiguity and wonder-lust all in all. As revenge is sweet - recovery can't be beat - and governmental treatment is nothing more than a cheat.

“I’m cured”.

Stanley Kubrick’s adaptation of Anthony Burgess’s least favorite novel, 'A Clockwork Orange', is a what I would call a film for the acquired taste. Well, on the one hand, the acting and the overall tale is rather bold and unnatural. Whilst, on the other hand, all of this strangely appears fitting for this type of film.

Now to explain to you what I mean by this, I have to say that what is presented upon the screen is obviously seventies Britain - yet the detail which populate this domain, is clearly not. For example, the brash color scheme of the interiors – the eclectic attire of the people – and the jumbled vocabulary which is used. Moreover, to make things even more peculiar, McDowell and the rest of the actor do such a good job of inhabiting this world, that they also manage to convey this rather peculiar and violent journey in a rather avantgarde and surrealist fashion

A Clockwork Orange -- The Guys

A Clockwork Orange French Poster
Oh! And of course, the director, Stanley Kurbrick, does what Kubric does best – enlighten us with something that is unusual in a rather captivating and original manner. Just look at the facts: (1) Stanley Kubrick made this movie because of the failure of his previous film 'Waterloo' - which was about the life and times of Napolean Boneparte. (2) The writer of the original book, Anthony Burgess, did not want Stanley to make this film. Still, he was very happy with the end result. (3) The writer who wrote the screenplay for this film, Terry Southern, also co-wrote the screenplay for 'Dr Strangelove' with Stanley [click here for the review]. (4) Mick Jagger was the first person to buy the rights to this film for $500 - and intended to make it with The Rolling Stones. (5) Many famous actors and directors were associated with this film before Stanley came on board - such as Ken Russell, Oliver Reed, Tim Curry, and Jeremy Irons. (6) Malcolm McDowell was scratched on the corneas in the Ludovico scene - and was temporarily blinded. (7) Stanley wanted the Pink Floyd song 'Atom Heart Mother Suite' in this film - but they declined his request due to his licensing regulations. (8) The song 'singing in the rain', was only included in the film, after an improvisational season between Malcolm and Stanley, where they tried to 'jazz up' the attack on the writer and his wife. (9) This was only one of two films rated with an X on it's original release - the other one was 'Midnight Cowboy'. (10) The title of the film / movie, derives from East London cockney slang 'As queer as a clockwork orange'. (11) In the book, Alex does not have a last name. In the film, he gives himself the last name of 'DeLarge'. (12) The language spoken in the movie is meant to be a composite of English, Russian, and Slang - it was distilled in the movie compared to the book. (13) This was the first movie made in Dolby sound. (14) The first cut of this film ran for over four hours. (15) Darth Vader, David Prowse, starred in this film. And (16) This film included the sign 'The End' at the end of the film - maintaining a tradition of old.

The Eyes Have A Clockwork Orange

Now to say that ‘A Clockwork Orange’ is an ‘acquired taste' overall, is a good thing in my eyes - and is not a negative statement to say in the least. Heck, to make this type of movie in more modern times would be tough thing to do, right?

Well, where is the market for an alternate world populating a baroque brute that kills, rapes, and attacks society, only to then have the ‘powers that be’ cover it up? Parliament perhaps? But not the movies.

Maybe? Ha!

Still, the message that this film tells is still very true today, or otherwise this movie would not be remembered in something like this..

'A Clockwork Orange' - the film is a classic through and through - eyes wide open.


A CLOCKWORK ORANGE A CLOCKWORK ORANGE Reviewed by David Andrews on March 23, 2012 Rating: 5
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