Customer Review

37 of 42 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars I prefer to watch other kind of films, but ..., 22 Sep 2005
This review is from: A Clockwork Orange [DVD] [1971] (DVD)
"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". Strange beginning for a movie, don't you think?. Disregarding that, that's the way in which this movie starts, and more or less what you can expect from the rest of "A Clockwork Orange".
This film tells the story of Alex (played by Malcolm McDowell), a teenager that has his own gang, and that does all kind of despicable things, from robbery and battery to rape, all without remorse of any kind. This band of outlaws has its own slang ("nadsat", a mixture of English and Russian) and dress code, and only one law: violence. Due to a fall out with the rest of the gang, Alex is caught by the police after commiting murder, and condemned to spend 14 years in jail.
Looking for a way to get out of jail early, Alex volunteers for a ground-breaking experiment, that supposedly transforms criminals into law-abiding citizens. He is chosen, and "conditioned" against violence, the end result being that he feels nauseous merely by the idea of committing a violent or sexual act. A secondary effect is that he now hates the music he had always loved, Beethoven's 9th symphony.
As a consequence of all this, Alex gets an early release from jail, and is thrown into the world without any kind of defense mechanism. The truth is, he has to be a model citizen because he doesn't have any other option. In a way, Alex is like a machine (a "clockwork orange"), because his actions are preordained. But how will the world treat this new Alex?. And do his actions have any kind of merit, if they aren't inspired on free will?. You can answer one of those two questions quite easily if you watch "A Clockwork Orange". The other involves a conclusion you will have to reach for yourself after watching the movie and reflecting on it for a while.
A word of caution is in order, though. "A Clockwork Orange" includes many explicit sex scenes, lots of violence, and parts that will make you recoil in disgust. If you think I'm exaggerating, take into account that even nowadays this movie is not for sale to persons under age 18, and that when it was first released in 1971 it received an "X" rating.
Finally, I want to point out that this movie is based on a book of the same name written by Anthony Burgess, that significantly differs from the film, especially in what regards to the ending. Furthermore, I think it is worthwhile to highlight the fact that Burgess didn't like his own book too much, and absolutely hated Stanley Kubrick's filmic version of it. Unfortunately for him, the movie helped to promote the book, and "A Clockwork Orange" has becomed Burgess' most well-known work.
All in all, and as a conclusion, I think this film is worth watching, and I recommend you to do so if you believe you can stomach the violent parts in order to eventually understand the message beneath them. I prefer to watch other kind of films, but I understand that this is a classic, and that as such it should be watched at least once.
Belen Alcat
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Showing 1-3 of 3 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 18 Jun 2009 14:52:37 BDT
actually except a bit on the beginning and end of the book, the film and book are almost identical workd for word, scene for scene.

Posted on 5 Dec 2010 13:05:02 GMT
Last edited by the author on 5 Dec 2010 13:08:07 GMT
ALVARO says:
This film is genius,violence as art Mc Dowell is hysterical as the Alpha male apparently every thing he did after this was naff a pity. IF, was O.K. mind, See this film before you die!

Posted on 20 Jun 2011 13:05:13 BDT
I read the book first and was almost drunk on its bi-lingual audacity, then saw the film years later screened at a theatre when the ban was lifted. It seems cheap, nasty, dated and inferior to the book, but is still undeniably powerful and shocking. Could such a film be remade in today's blase climate and still retain its power to shock? The film is even bleaker, omitting the last chapter of the book where Alex simply outgrows his need to commit acts of violence. Can you believe it was written over fifty years ago? Prison overcrowding, social apathy and music and clothes obsessed youth culture. Viddy well, my droogs...
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