2. Clockwork Orange
“Based on Anthony Burgess's disturbing novel about England
in the totalitarian future, Malcolm McDowell portrays Alex, a
Beethoven-loving, head-bashing punk who leads his gang of
droogs on ultra-violent assaults--until he is captured by
authorities and subjected to nasty behavior-modification
3. Technical Information
-Title: A Clockwork Orange
-Date of Release: 1971
-Language: English / Slang
-Director: Stanley Kubrick
-Writer: Stanley Kubrick (Screenplay)
Anthony Burgess (Novel)
-Genre: Crime, Satire, Thriller, Sci-Fi
-Run time: 136 min
-Camera: Newman Sinclair and Arriflex 35 IIC
-Location: Binsey Walk, Southmere Lake, Thamesmead South, London, England, UK
4. Filming Techniques
- Many documentary style techniques used (2$ million budget)
- Music played while filming at the set. Not included later in post production.
- Only shooting with natural light.
- Using a wheelchair for tracking shots.
- Originally ‘X’ Rated, Kubrick replaced 30 seconds of the film to change the rating to ‘R’.
- The film took 7 months to shoot (the fastest produced film by Kubrick).
- Many scenes were filmed with a fisheye lens to give a dream- like, fantasy quality.
- The film was mostly shot on location around London with very little studio usage.
- Handheld cameras were used for aesthetic intimacy.
- The use of slow motion and speeded up frames to emphasize some fight, rape and
violence scenes, it very often contradicts the characters actions.
5. Stanley Kubrick
- American filmmaker, screenwriter and producer
- Born in New York, late Sixties moved to England
- Visual Effects: A Space Odyssey (1968)
- Most of his films are based on novels
- Main themes used: war, sex, violence and the dark side of human nature
- The use of long "zooming out" and "zooming in" techniques
- Many close-ups of intensely emotional faces
- All of Kubrick's films feature a scene that takes place in a bathroom
Films and Documentaries:
•Day of the Fight (1951) •Killer's Kiss (1955) •A Space Odyssey (1968) (Oscar)
•Full Metal Jacket (1987)
•Feature films: •Spartacus (1960) •A Clockwork Orange (1971)
•Eyes Wide Shut (1999)
•Fear and Desire (1953) •Lolita (1962) •The Shining (1980)
6. “A Clockwork Orange”
- A person who has the appearance of an organism lovely with colour and juice but is
in fact only a clockwork toy to be wound up by God or the Devil or the Almighty State.
-"Application of a mechanistic morality to a living organism oozing with juice and
sweetness". - Anthony Burgess
- Robotic behaviorally but human in all other aspects.
7. A Clockwork Orange
“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.”
9. Historical and Social Context
-England in the near future, forms of futuristic art work in a mood of rejection of moral principals and
religion- sculpted, sleek, hygienic white glass nude furniture and statues are used.
-The central idea of the film has to do with the question of free-will. The movie takes place in a corrupted
and totalitarian society in England’s 60’s.
-Their names are symbolic: Alex represents the heroic and majestic leader, Alexander the Great, but in
this case "A-lex" - a man without law or 'a law unto himself.' A-lex literally means 'without law.'.
-The droogs have Russian names and Dim is probably a shortened version of Dimitri.
-The film makes a reference to Christ. (Alex brutally fantasizes about being a Roman guard at the
Crucifixion while he feigns Bible study in the prison library).
-Everything that happens in the movie is seen though Alex’s eyes, this may have some effect in
distancing the violence and it’s context.
-In the film, the State is worse than the criminals and the scientists are worse than the State.
-The prison is the most acceptable place in the whole movie. Music is used as a cultural reference. The
use of modern and pop art (milk bar, cat lady house...)
10. The Counter Culture
A counterculture rejects or challenges mainstream culture or particular elements of it.
- Rebel against the accepted or acceptable way of doing things.
- Struggle for liberation when you are oppressed or marginalised.
- Creating your own culture when you aren’t happy with the culture around you and finding new ways to
It happened during the Sixties were denoting the complex of inter-related cultural and political trends in the
People opposing of political and cultural situation and wanting a social revolution.
11. The Counter Culture
-In UK, the Labour Party gained power in 1964 - a left-of-center political party formed in 1900 to represent
the interest of ordinary working people.
-In the UK violence and crime were increasing. The total figures for reported crime in the sixties went up to
21,046 in 1968.
MOVIE INDUSTRY IN THE 60‘s
-Movies began to break social taboos such as sex and violence causing both controversy and fascination.
-This was the beginning of the New Hollywood era.
Labour Party - Prime
12. Cast and Characters
Malcolm McDowell Alex
Supporting actors / actresses
Warren Clarke Dim
James Marcus Georgie
Michael Tarn Pete
Patrick Magee Mr Alexander
Michael Bates Chief Guard
Adrienne Corri Mrs. Alexander
Carl Duering Dr Brodsky
13. Cast and Characters
- He is a writer that bases all his action on
Pete: - He is a strong believer of human rights and
- A member of Alex’s gang. free will
- He is the simplest member and least important of the - However he turns out to be the hypocrite
gang. - He also proves that there can be evil and
violence in everyone
- A member of Alex’s gang who later becomes a police
- He is the biggest, strongest, yet stupidest member.
- Represents the highest ranking
- He fights with a chain.
- Leads an extremely repressive government
- His only concern is the stability of the society
- Sets up two major policies
- A member of Alex’s gang.
- Has the typical values of a socialist
- He is the most rebellious and head strong.
government that overlooks the needs and
- He is the one to lead the rebellion against Alex.
rights of individuals.
- He also joins the police force in the end.
- Also stands for a totalitarian government
using mass media to get the message across.
14. Clothing Analysis
- The uniforms look a lot like those used by the Nazis.
- The genital gard shows that he is protected
emotionally. Also gives him security due to it’s size, as if
showing off to have a big penis.
- Eroticism (using excessive decor cane/genital
- The white of the costumes stands for purity and
innocence it is a paradox as they believe in violence.
- The eyeball on Alex’s costumes stands for him being the
leader and have an eye on all the operations.
- The clown disguise means that the acts of violence
represent a game.
- The costumes are associated with male power.
Order in Society vs. Freedom of Choice
The Necessity of Evil in Human Nature
Youth Culture in Britain
Interdependance of Life and Art
Representation of Women
Order in Society vs. Freedom of Choice
- Freedom to make choices is problematic when undermining safety and stability of society.
- The state protects society by taking away the freedom of choice.
- Alex, rapes, murders and steals which is dangerous. By taking away his ability to choose is just as
dangerous: element of humanity.
The Necessity of Evil in Human Nature
-Importance of evil as well as good in human nature.
-Being “bad” is what makes him human.
-The “Ludovico” treatment makes him less dangerous, but also less human.
-Alex doesn’t become good because he chose to.
Interdependance of Life and Art
-Characters view and use art in many different ways.
-Singing in the rain scene - transforms a violent act into a song and dance, distancing himself from the brutality and
from his victims suffering.
-Alex uses music, film and art to express and understand his life.
- The cat lady, expresses sexuality through her statues and her paintings. (Through art, she makes sexuality an object
not to be touched).
- Art has potential for good an evil.
- Kubirck makes sex and violence look unreal in the film. He directs fight scenes to look like dance, slows down the
camera, and distorts images. He plays with out perceptions so that we never forget we are watching a work of art.
- In many sets there are pieces of art present in the background, which creates another reference to art.
- Sex is not an expression of love or intimacy, but rather an exhibition of power and violence.
- All human relationships revolve around the question of control.
Phalic: Nose Masks
Two teenage girls (teeny boppers), licking phalic shaped ice cream lolli pops.
Orgies: Has sex with teeny boppers in turns, which is filmed in ultra speed creating a reference to art
Representation of Women
-Women are portrayed through Alex’s eyes:
1. Mother Figures (His own mother)
2. Sexual Objects used for rape and portrayed in a vulnerable way.
Example: In the props at the Milk bar (tables are naked female mannequins) - dehumanising.
The girls from the music store, he immediately perceives them as sexual objects and later has a
threesome with them.
- Jesus Christ statues represents 4 droogs
- Alex relationship with religion
The Korova Milk Bar
- Dual image of innocence and misbehaviour.
- Mothers milk symbolizes comfort and nurturing
- Only teenangers drinking milk
- Milk refering to babies
- The fact that the milk flows from women in sexual position isn’t sexual at all.
- Drugs in the milk – heighten their tendency for ultra violence
- Bar reflects Alex own nature – childlike and frightfully brutal
- Music brings Alex to ecstasy.
- Signal of freedom of choice.
- Music connects the movie to history.
- References to Ludwig van Beethoven throughout the whole movie, using different Symphonies.
- Represents a sacred ideal for Alex - Highest form of art therefore joy.
- Compositions always accompany perpetration of crimes.
- Crimes apparently committed for aesthetic or sensory ecstacy.
Ludwig van Beethoven, Wolgang Amadeus Mozart, Handel
Alex’s crimes are simply comitted for his own plesaure.
Beethoven, Mozart & Handel’s classical music is perceived as art by many.
Alex uses art as a type of ecstacy and therefore the music is a vehicle to his actions.
Ludwig van Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony
- Beethoven meant to express the heights of human goodness rather than abandonment
- Ninth symphony punctuates heights and depths of human experience.
Known as "cancers" in nadsat, giving them a negative connotation
Cigarettes used to perceive a cool image / Modern Youth.
To Alex, blood is beauty.
- Blood symbolizes vitality and energy.
- Alex experiences joy from blood.
- Alex takes pleasure in his descriptions of the red, hot blood that poors out of his victims.
27. Broken Elevator = Iconic Imagery
- Reflects the society
- Decadent / chic
- Lack of functionality
Mirror = Symbolic Imagery
-Truth or vanity
- Reflection of one self
- Becomes himself
Jesus = Iconic Imagery
- Martyr figure
- Sacrifices his individual identity for society
- Sayings of Christ
Facial Expression = Indexical Imagery
- Pleasuring himself
- Strong sexual connotation
- Very real
- A stimulator (for emotions and appetite).
- Demands attention.
- Indicate a bridge between two opposing factors (Good Versus Evil and Order
of Society Versus Freeedom of Choice.
- Used to get people thinking or talking.
- The slang that they use is known as Nadsat (meaning teen in Russian)
- A mix of old Russian and cockney English
- Only used by teenagers as a form of rebelliousm
- The language was invented at the time of the two biggest superpowers: American Capitalist
Democracy & Soviet Communism
- Its used as a teenager language
The old in and out = sex
Bratty = Brother
Deng = Money
pee and em = pop and mom
sarky = sarcastic
sinny = cinema
- Mr & Misses Alexander’s house.
- In their living room.
- The droogs invade their home.
- Miss Alexander won’t let the droogs in (door bell is to the fifth symphony of Beethoven) - “never let
strangers in” as a moral value.
- Rape Miss Alexander.
(When Alex comes home, we find out they have also taken money and watches from the Alexander’s
property as he adds them to his collection in his nightstand).
Clothes and Costumes
- 4 droogs: White Typical Costume
- Mr. Alexander: Hawai floral print shirt (Orange print)
- Mrs. Alexander: Orange Red Mono
- Colour Orange (Typewriter, tables, clothing of
- House: Ultra Modern home, prediciting futurustic
arhectecial design ( Burges writes the novel in
- “Home” - Hanging on the gate of the home
where F. Alexander lives.
Part 1: When going to Alexander’s home they are
seeking violence and fun time. Their actions
oppose all positive connections of a home-
Part 3: Alex goes to the same “Home”, after being
left out by Georgie and Pete. “Home” here
symbolizes a place of refugee, solice and a
“meeting of minds” (F. Alexander and Alex are
both against the government now) against the
- White Chair: Futurism
- Mirror: Surrealism - Reflection - Sexual
- Black & White floor
- Painting: Reassurance
- Masks: Phalic-nosed
-“Singing in the Rain” by Gene Kelly.
- Transforms a violent act into a song and dance, distancing himself from the brutality and from his victims
- The music adds to his ironic connotation.
- Non Verbal Communication (Dancing) .
- Qualisign - White Clothing
- Single Sign - Genital Gard
- Legisign - Milk
- Rhema = Alex’s clothing, behaviour and actions
- Dicent= Eyelash
- Argument= Eyelash shows Alex is the leader as he is the only
one wearing it.
- Eyelash only on one eye (Good Versus Evil)
39. Model of Communication
- Sender: Alex
- Reciever: Audience
- Context: Alex is the leader
- Message: Alex through physical agression, demonstrates leadership.
- Code: Physical Agression