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Kubrick


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Initial post: Jul 27, 2012 7:45:28 PM PDT
Amy Hall says:
Stanley Kubrick. Who could not watch his films forever.

TBS is showing "The Shining". I've seen it a million times, and yet, because of the way Kubrick directed it, I get freaked out, fully knowing what happens.

And they just got to the hotel; it's their first day!

Your favorite Kubrick film?

Posted on Jul 27, 2012 9:51:40 PM PDT
D. Robinson says:
Dr. Strangelove

Posted on Jul 27, 2012 10:21:23 PM PDT
Db_auto1 says:
The killing: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0049406/

Posted on Jul 27, 2012 10:47:36 PM PDT
Toss-up between 'A Clockwork Orange' and 'Barry Lyndon'.

Posted on Jul 27, 2012 10:52:42 PM PDT
Jonathan says:
Favorite - 'Lolita'. Best - '2001'.

Posted on Jul 27, 2012 10:54:42 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jul 27, 2012 11:06:12 PM PDT
Full Metal Jacket

"These boots are made for walkin'
And that's just what they'll do.
One'a these days these boots are gonna walk all over you"

War is hell.

Posted on Jul 28, 2012 12:39:28 AM PDT
Amy Hall says:
I just finished watching it. (shaking) Soooo freaking scary. You know that scene when the maze is introduced? The small one on the table in the lounge, and the husband is glaring at two moving figures, who are the mom and son, and the camera moves in until they appear lifesize.

Holy mackerel. So good.

Posted on Jul 28, 2012 10:33:43 AM PDT
7 & 7 IS says:
All but his last two

Posted on Jul 28, 2012 12:06:09 PM PDT
I second Dr. Strangelove as also being my favorite Kubrick film. George C. Scott is the funniest thing about the film.

A Clockwork Orange is my second favorite of his.

Posted on Jul 28, 2012 3:27:29 PM PDT
Here are my top 3 Kubrick picks:

1.) 2001: A Space Odyssey - for sheer spectacle, not to mention its at times weighty subject matter, this film provoked a sense of wonder and awe in a way that clearly inspired Lucas ("Star Wars") and Spielberg ("Close Encounters of the Third Kind"), and is one of a handful of truly landmark movies. While I tend to agree with its detractors that the pacing can be a bit glacial at times, such that I kind of have to be in the mood for it, if you give 2001 your complete concentration (try seeing it on the big screen, if possible), it has a kind of hypnotic effect that is unique, totally transportative, and a richly rewarding cinematic experience. Although I can't quite remember when I first saw 2001 in full, and actually better remember cartoon references to it via PBS' Electric Company, I suspect it was at the Cinerama (or was that the Pacific Science Center?) during one of its revivals; perhaps a 10-year anniversary in the wake of Star Wars. A brilliant, and in many ways, timeless film!

2.) Dr. Strangelove - I flip-flop between this one and 2001 as being my favorite Kubrick, but these are vastly different films, so cannot fairly compare to each other. I completely agree with Pastor of Muppets that George C. Scott pretty much steals every scene he is in. While this one lends itself more to casual viewing for me than 2001, too many of the jokes seem woefully dated, so for now I rank it second.

3.) The Shining - I know this may not be considered to be Kubrick's best movie, or even a particularly good one at that, but it certainly has proven to be repeatedly entertaining to this viewer (nice to see that the OP apparently shares my opinion). Jack Nicholson is just so over-the-top, and Shelly Duvall is perfect as his submissive wife (though I thought she was even better as Olive Oyl). Even more so than Dr. Strangelove, whenever "The Shining" comes on TV and I happen to be lounging around, I do find myself alighting on it and usually end up watching most of it. This movie, much like 2001, for me showcases Kubrick's eye for visualizing seemingly ordinary spaces as ominous and foreboding; in other words, I can tell Kubrick filmed it, and enjoy it all the more.

Posted on Jul 28, 2012 3:43:13 PM PDT
Jonathan says:
Now is my time to confess that 'The Shining' is one of the movies I despise most from a director I admire. I like the actors, score, I recognize the craft that went into it... and yet none of it works together to create a good movie in my eyes. I think it's a rather rotten movie. And I am a fan of horror movies.

Much preferable is this cut (although it reminds one of a Rob Reiner movie):

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KmkVWuP_sO0

Posted on Jul 28, 2012 8:13:49 PM PDT
GW (Gina) says:
How can one choose a favorite child?

All his films are unique & great in their own way.

Posted on Jul 29, 2012 12:04:52 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jul 29, 2012 12:11:17 AM PDT
'2001: A Space Odyssey'. The movie simply haunts me each time I watch it, and it has so many different layers of meaning to it.

One thing, though: why did such a great director like Kubrick only turn out a total of 13 films throughout his career ? And why is 'Fear and Desire' not out on DVD ?

Out of the 12 films I have seen of his, I can honestly say that 'The Shining' is the only one I did not care for. A little too over-the-top and dragged out.

Malcolm McDowell should have won the Best Actor Oscar for 'A Clockwork Orange'.

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 29, 2012 10:52:08 AM PDT
I've never understood why Kubrick wasn't more prolific either. Same with Lindsay Anderson, who made some great Kubrick-type films in the late 60s/early 70s ('If....', 'O Lucky Man') and then all but disappeared.

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 29, 2012 11:31:00 AM PDT
Bwah-ha-ha-ha-ha! :-)

Thanks for the link, Jonathan; that's great! A bit off-topic here, but have you seen the one turning "Mary Poppins" into a horror film (which it kinda already was!)? I have a feeling this is what Kubrick might have done with that story:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2T5_0AGdFic&feature=related

I guess I should qualify my choice of "The Shining" further by saying that I have long regarded it precisely as a horror comedy of sorts, and tend to watch it with a bit of an MST-3K mindset. Sure it is an example of an "A"-level director working on essentially a "B"-level movie, and there have been perhaps more successful examples of this in the past (Welles' "Touch of Evil" and Hitchcock's "Psycho" both come to mind); still, "The Shining" is a movie that has stayed with me over the years along with other suspenseful horror flicks from that era like "Halloween" and "Friday the 13th" (although the latter series is a bit too literally "campy" even for me...ymmv!), and I much prefer it to Kubrick's more celebrated "A Clockwork Orange" (seems to have been hugely influential on Tarantino and others, at least in terms of highly stylized violence) or the often equally ultra-violent "Full Metal Jacket" (just not really my cuppa).

The bottom line is Kubrick was a master film maker who put his identifiable stamp on practically everything he did. I will second what GW said that all his films were unique & great in their own way such that despite an unfortunate dearth in volume, because what Kubrick left was so varied, chances are good that a viewer can find something to like (or at least appreciate) in his remarkable oeuvre.

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 3, 2012 8:20:05 PM PDT
BackToGood says:
2001 and Paths of Glory feel like Kubrick's most "perfect" films to me, the rest having their flaws and weaknesses. The Killing and Barry Lyndon are faves for me, too.

Posted on Sep 4, 2012 6:04:09 PM PDT
2001: A Space Odyssey (especially when seen on the Cinerama screen).
Dr. Strangelove
A Clockwork Orange
Barry Lyndon

Posted on Sep 6, 2012 1:56:31 PM PDT
Dr. Strangelove-Peter Sellers, George C. Scott and Sterling Hayden turn in memorable performances. Still laugh out loud funny after all these years and many viewings.

Posted on Sep 11, 2012 1:24:12 AM PDT
Stan Giesea says:
It's a testament to Kubrick's searing intelligence and brilliant artistry that it's nearly impossible to choose a favorite from his catalogue. However, if pressed, I'd rank them in the following order:

1 - 2001: A SPACE ODYSSEY
2 - A CLOCKWORK ORANGE
3 - DR. STRANGELOVE
4 - LOLITA
5 - THE SHINING
6 - BARRY LYNDON
7 - PATHS OF GLORY
8 - FULL METAL JACKET
9 - THE KILLING
10 - KILLER'S KISS
11 - EYES WIDE SHUT
12 - SPARTACUS
12 - FEAR AND DESIRE (a promising but clunky first effort)

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 11, 2012 3:24:13 AM PDT
Stan Giesea:

Interesting list. About what I would have said except I would have down rated "The Shining." I didn't think it was among his better efforts and I've never seen "Eyes Wide Shut."

Posted on Sep 16, 2012 10:55:06 PM PDT
Stan Giesea says:
Bruce, you should check out a YouTube video entitled "Film psychology: THE SHINING - spatial awareness and set design," a treatise detailing how the production design of the film intentionally creates an Overlook Hotel that is, in fact, impossible, and more labyrinthine than the hedge maze. It may lead you to have a renewed respect for the film and for Kubrick's clever conceit for keeping the viewers subconsciously off-balance.

In my opinion, it shows that Kubrick was way ahead of his audience on virtually every level (and attempting something far more complex than you're likely to find in any conventional horror film), and also helps to explain why the film has always had such an inexplicable effect on its adherents.

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 17, 2012 8:41:10 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Sep 17, 2012 8:43:00 AM PDT
Stan Giesea:

Some of the things in "The Shining" that put me off a little:

Kubrick, in "The Shining" as he had done in "2001: A Space Odyssey," used mostly music already existing as concert pieces: Bartok's "Music for Strings, Percussion & Celeste," Ligeti's "Lontano for Orchestra," etc. Instead of having the desired atmospheric effects, my reaction was: "Oh, they're using Bartok's Music for Strings, how nice" or "That's Ligeti's piece." The opening credit music uses the "Dies Irae" theme heard in Berlioz's "Symphonie fantastique" but here created on a synthesizer, I believe. These works had resided in my music collection for some years and would have been more effective for me as background for this movie if I hadn't already been very familiar with them.

One of the best scenes is the one between Jack Nicholson and the fine British actor Philip Stone, playing the waiter who "accidentally" spills a tray of drinks on Nicholson. The ensuing conversation in the men's room as Stone is dabbing the stains from Nicholson's clothes becomes increasing foreboding, while the sweet dance music of the 1930s filters in from the ball room. There, the background music was extremely effective. That whole scene of Nicholson in the crowed ballroom and the scene following in the men's room with the waiter must have been portraying a psychotic
episode on the part of Nicholson and it does so very effectively.

The steadi-cam was a new development at the time "The Shining" was in production and Kubrick was obviously fascinated with its possibilities. The result is that it is overused and begins to call attention to itself: It follows the little boy on his tricycle through the corridors in very long takes, follows Jack Nicholson as he walks from room to room in the inn and Shelley Duvall as she runs in panic from room to room. Also it follows the little boy in the snow-covered hedge maze in long takes, steady as a rock and without a shiver. OK, it's a big improvement in cinema, but enough, already.

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 17, 2012 8:51:39 AM PDT
Kevin Beirne says:
"OK, it's a big improvement in cinema, but enough, already."

Stating that the use of the filming technique annoyed you I understand perfectly. You mean that detail drew your attention, and you didn't much care for it.

I don't really see why however. I would guess you might have not seen Cloverdale, the four or so year old movie that came along in the bandwagon of horrible things attacking the residents of a city type flick. I would guess that you have seen movies filmed in a similar way however - the entire film, every frame is a shaky vantage point, the camera is never at any point solidly focused on its target, and the cuts are quick and sporadic. That stuff drives me nuts. I'd much prefer a gross overuse of the steadi-cam to the attention deficit cutting and hand held camera shaking that appeared to be a big trend for a while there...

I rather like The Shining, and the scenes with the camera following Danny through the hallway on his bigwheel. It's creepy. Goes along with the camera following the axe swings into the bathroom door where Wendy is attempting to hide from crazy axe wielding Jack.

I suppose it's not for everyone, but I certainly like The Shining a lot. The score, the acting, the ominous, almost morbid camera shots... one of my favorite horror films actually.

Posted on Sep 17, 2012 9:35:42 AM PDT
Kevin Beirne says:
I have only seen A Clockwork Orange, 2001: A Space Odyssey, Full Metal Jacket, The Shining, Dr. Strangelove (once - must get a copy - loved it), and Eyes Wide Shut. My favorite of those is definitely A Clockwork Orange. The remaining order shifts depending on what day you ask me. I do love them all (that I have seen). Very interested in seeing his other films...not sure where to start - I'll just check em all out.

1.) A Clockwork Orange
2.) 2001: A Space Odyssey
3.) The Shining
4.) Full Metal Jacket
5.) Dr. Strangelove
6.) Eyes Wide Shut
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Discussion in:  Movie forum
Participants:  16
Total posts:  24
Initial post:  Jul 27, 2012
Latest post:  Sep 17, 2012

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