Sunday, January 19, 2014

104 A Clockwork Orange

This week Matt and Mark review Kubrik's A Clockwork Orange. Viddying the horror-show ultra-violence and some of the ole in-out in out, we seek the film's thematic elements through its stylistic fog. While Alex is a miserable, violent, and possibly irredeemable bastard, he provides us a window into an alien personality that we experience but with whom we aren't necessarily asked to sympathize. And that may've been  the films worst sin in many critics' eyes, thus dismissing a beautifully wrought film of near artistic perfection.

Download:  104 A Clockwork Orange


  1. Hi Guys - love your podcast (as a 40-something male ex-grunge nerd in New Zealand). I discovered your podcast when looking for more information on Carruth's "Primer", which has taken a place near the top of my favourite-flix list. Listened to this one (Clockwork Orange) on my way to work this morning and I thought I'd drop you a line. You guys were discussing the idea about whether the film made a value judgement about the therapy. I am a psychology lecturer at a NZ university, where behaviourism is still pretty prominent. Burgess wrote his book at the time behaviourism was being knocked off its perch (by cognitive psychology) as the dominant school in psychology. Burgess did write it as a response to (what he saw as) the horrors of behavior modification planned for use in US prisons, and interfering with free will. The film came out in the same year that BF skinner (the staunchest of the behaviourist) published "Beyond Freedom and Dignity" and appeared on the cover of Time magazine, which ran the line "BF Skinner says: We can't afford freedom", which freaked out many. So, some historical context.

    Keep up the excellent podcasts!

    By the way, any chance you guys would be up for tackling Lynch's "Dune" (an Ebert 1-star)? I would love to hear your take on that. I know it's a slog, but I would love to hear it.

  2. Ricky, thanks for the backstory on this.Very interesting stuff. Mark and I have many offline discussions about free will, which may have led that particular conversation. I'll have to revisit the topic.

    Dune is on my list. I love Lynch and I have to say Dune is a beautiful mess of a movie but just haven't gotten around to reviewing yet.

    Thanks for dropping a note and thanks for listening. Say hello to NZ for us.