By Ally Lashley
The time has come for students to ready themselves for a bit of the old ultraviolence. The English Honor Society has kick started their semester activities with the showing of Stanley Kubrick’s 1971 film, on the Anthony Burgess novel, A Clockwork Orange.
Every Wednesday at common hour, the English Honor Society shows a movie and has a discussion about the societies’ activities to come. A vote was taken on the first meeting of the society to choose movies to watch throughout the semester; the first winner being, A Clockwork Orange. Any students with a fascination for fine arts, film, or literature are more than welcome to join the festivities of the English Honor Society.
Dr. William Burns is the English Honor Society advisor, and is very pleased to show this film to his students. “We voted on numerous films in the beginning of the semester, and out of all the films A Clockwork Orange won.” This 1971 film was originally supposed to be filmed in the 1960’s, with the Rolling Stones appearing as our four droogs, and Mick Jagger being the lovely main character Alex Delarge.
However, Stanley Kubrick became the director and turned this film into a cinematic masterpiece of its time, without the Stones.
For students who aren’t familiar with this movie, it’s about four young boys, or droogs, in London, stirring up ultraviolent actions wherever they damned well please. Alex, played by Malcolm McDowell, is the leader of this violent gang, and their actions are a bit graphic. The horror these boys inflict upon innocent humans creates frenzy around their city. The showing of this movie may be controversial, but the meaning behind this movie is much more profound. Dr. Burns reminds me of the meaning of this film, how violence is everywhere, but we must know how to control it, “this film is about the importance of choice, but also realizing all choices have consequences.”
The opening scene of the film is what really had me interested. The way Kubrick films, a viewer is automatically pulled into the film with the stare of his main character. When Kubrick filmed the Shining, Jack Nicholson’s facial expression became famous. With a Clockwork Orange beginning, Malcolm McDowell’s violent eyes are hypnotizing, and get you hooked to this movie instantly.
The film has shocking scenes of violence, but in such beautiful settings. In one scene of the film, a rape scene, a group of men are ripping the clothes off of a woman while Rossini’s the Thieving Magpie Abridged is the music playing beautifully in the background. “That’s why this film works, the bringing together of opposites, Kubrick takes scenes of pure violence and adds beauty,” Dr. Burns adds.
Dr. Burns knows exactly what Kubrick’s vision is, and goes into more detail about the meaning behind this movie. “I think the important thing about this film is that even though it’s a violent, crazy movie it has a purpose; to show a point about violence. Violence is a choice, and it’s something everyone has to know how to control.”