A Clockwork Orange (1971)
Directed by Stanley Kubrick
Stars: Malcolm McDowell, Warren Clarke, James Marcus, Michael Tarn, Patrick Magee
"There was me, that is Alex, and my three droogs, that is Pete, Georgie, and Dim, and we sat in the Korova Milkbar trying to make up our rassoodocks what to do with the evening. The Korova milkbar sold milk-plus, milk plus vellocet or synthemesc or drencrom, which is what we were drinking. This would sharpen you up and make you ready for a bit of the old ultra-violence."
This is my favorite movie of all time. Stanley Kubrick's visionary masterpiece is a stunning adaptation of the incredible Anthony Burgess novel. While many find this film uncomfortable and shocking, there is no denying the power of this extraordinary work of art.
In a bleak futuristic landscape, vicious teen Alex and his droogs spend their leisure time practing ultra-violence, extremely cruel beatings, robberies, and rape. Circumstances land Alex in prison, and when he learns of an experimental treatment that "cures" deviant behavior, he rashly volunteers in order to earn his freedom, unaware of the terrible personal cost.
It is a testament to the superior acting skills of Malcolm McDowell and Kubrick's strength as a director that the audience is able to sympathize with Alex's predicament. The transformation from an amoral degenerate into a brainwashed societal punching bag is a harrowing one that we share with Alex. We are forced to consider the issue at stake here- does not every man have the right (right-right) to live freely as an individual, even if he is not a law-abiding citizen? Is it fair to force someone to be "good", and what exactly is "good"? As human beings, is it not our choice to decide who we are and how we will behave, taking the consequences for our own actions?
I consider this the most frightening, gut-wrenching morality tale ever burned into my psyche. The provocative plot, wondrous score, remarkable sets and costumes, and the incredible language are all components that add up to the ultimate movie experience. No other film in existence compares. This flick will grab you by the yarbles, if you have any yarbles!