A Clockwork Orange demonstrates how well Stanley Kubrick is able to infuse his political philosophies with all of the quirks and theatrical flare you would expect from him. His direction is able to put his grandiose ideas on full display.
This short film is particularly impressive when you consider that the director was 18 years old at the time it was made. Such complexity and vivid emotion in one short film.
The script and cinematography do a great job at capturing the subtle undertones of what is plaguing the main character personally. You’re made to feel the humiliation Joey Jumbler is experiencing at first, to later be replaced with an understanding of why he’s the most solemn clown.
The scenery is so picturesque you forget this is a three hour movie. While the plot is slow moving, everything about this movie is deliberate, from the intentional framing of each shot, to the subtle movements and facial expressions that have you anticipating what a character will do, to the delivery of such minimal dialogue. The beauty of western films and Sergio Leone’s directing is that there is no need for plot twists, you’re enabled to appreciate the plot at…
For the first hour and a half of this movie, you’re in a trance; the monotone narration, play on lighting, the tired expressions and somber eyes of the characters, coupled with the dark comedy, have you fixated on the screen with nothing disturbing your attention.
The last half hour is spent questioning your own sanity, the trance is broken and replaced with pure distress.