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A Clockwork Orange (1971)

tomatometer

89

Average Rating: 8.4/10
Reviews Counted: 46
Fresh: 41 | Rotten: 5

Disturbing and thought-provoking, A Clockwork Orange is a cold, dystopian nightmare with a very dark sense of humor.

60

Average Rating: 6.9/10
Critic Reviews: 10
Fresh: 6 | Rotten: 4

Disturbing and thought-provoking, A Clockwork Orange is a cold, dystopian nightmare with a very dark sense of humor.

audience

93

liked it
Average Rating: 4/5
User Ratings: 429,787

My Rating

Movie Info

Stanley Kubrick dissects the nature of violence in this darkly ironic, near-future satire, adapted from Anthony Burgess's novel, complete with "Nadsat" slang. Classical music-loving proto-punk Alex (Malcolm McDowell) and his "Droogs" spend their nights getting high at the Korova Milkbar before embarking on "a little of the old ultraviolence," such as terrorizing a writer, Mr. Alexander (Patrick Magee), and gang raping his wife (who later dies as a result). After Alex is jailed for bludgeoning

Jun 29, 1999

Warner Bros.

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All Critics (46) | Top Critics (10) | Fresh (41) | Rotten (5) | DVD (25)

A painless, bloodless, and ultimately pointless futuristic fantasy.

February 6, 2013 Full Review Source: Village Voice
Village Voice
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Kubrick's contributions are his wit and his eye. The wit, too much at times, is as biting as in Dr. Strangelove, and the production, while of another order, is as spectacular as in 2001.

January 18, 2013 Full Review Source: Chicago Tribune
Chicago Tribune
Top Critic IconTop Critic

A merciless, demoniac satire in the future imperfect.

August 22, 2008 Full Review Source: TIME Magazine
TIME Magazine
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Stanley Kubrick's latest film takes the heavy realities of the 'do-your-thing' and 'law-and-order' syndromes, runs them through a cinematic centrifuge, and spews forth the commingled comic horrors of a regulated society.

May 8, 2007 Full Review Source: Variety | Comment (1)
Variety
Top Critic IconTop Critic

A very bad film -- snide, barely competent, and overdrawn -- that enjoys a perennial popularity, perhaps because its confused moral position appeals to the secret Nietzscheans within us.

Chicago Reader
Top Critic IconTop Critic

A sexless, inhuman film, whose power derives from a ruthless subordination of its content to the demands of telling a good story.

February 9, 2006 Full Review Source: Time Out | Comments (27)
Time Out
Top Critic IconTop Critic

A violent meditation on violence. Not for kids.

January 1, 2011 Full Review Source: Common Sense Media | Comments (3)
Common Sense Media

The rare film that hits you in the head and stomach simultaneously.

September 4, 2010 Full Review Source: Bullz-Eye.com
Bullz-Eye.com

[VIDEO ESSAY] There's Stanley Kubrick's "A Clockwork Orange," and then there's everything else.

July 25, 2009 Full Review Source: ColeSmithey.com | Comments (13)
ColeSmithey.com

The music made me do it

June 28, 2009 Full Review Source: JWR

Producer-director Stanley Kubrick's adaptation of the Anthony Burgess novel is a strangely overwhelming experience %u2013 at time contemptible, and yet always valid in its sardonic outlook.

July 23, 2008 Full Review Source: ESplatter | Comment (1)
ESplatter

Ambitious and stylized (perhaps to a fault), Kubrick's poignantly prophetic satire of crime and punishment, redemption and free will, is still much misunderstood by critics emphasizing its ultra-violence.

February 22, 2008 Full Review Source: EmanuelLevy.Com | Comment (1)
EmanuelLevy.Com

Spectacular, operatic, colorful, and exquisitely photographed.

November 19, 2007 Full Review Source: Slant Magazine
Slant Magazine

All of Kubricks films have generated controversy, but this one engendered outright hostility.

November 3, 2007 Full Review Source: Movie Metropolis
Movie Metropolis

Directed with assurance and filled with the cynicism, paranoia, visual flair (and lurid titillation) that characterised so much of his work, this is vintage Kubrick and classic cinema.

October 2, 2007 Full Review Source: Film4
Film4

Remains as unsettling and shocking today as the day it was released.

July 30, 2007 Full Review Source: eFilmCritic.com | Comment (1)
eFilmCritic.com

Who else but Stanley Kubrick could successfully direct an ultra-stylish, sci-fi cult film about the impossibility of redemption in the absence of freely willed sin?

May 8, 2007 Full Review Source: TV Guide's Movie Guide | Comments (2)
TV Guide's Movie Guide

Ice cold, indecent, and way too obvious to be in any way deep.

February 9, 2006 Full Review Source: F5 (Wichita, KS) | Comments (26)

May be Kubrick's greatest film, for its lasting influence and social significance.

February 25, 2005 Full Review Source: Arizona Daily Star
Arizona Daily Star

Audience Reviews for A Clockwork Orange

Classic, I know....but I was skeptical going into this especially after hearing how it was a great movie while being different and "weird" at the same time. I can see why it has a cult following and why it is widely considered one of the greatest films of all time. For me, the film was strange and disturbing at points, but overall the message and themes were amazing. Not a film that has shot up into my favorites, but definitely a film that I have alot of respect for now.
July 29, 2013
Eric Alvarez

Super Reviewer

A Clockwork Orange is a strange and disturbing film, but its performances and themes make it a very memorable and cerebral movie.
February 28, 2013
Daniel Lermenator

Super Reviewer

Often brutal and inhuman, A Clockwork Orange is a powerful entry in the dystopian film genre. Its use of humor is both disturbing yet enticing, and as it may be too much for a normal person to all in all stomach at first, its message nonetheless is too unforgettable for anyone to set aside.
October 30, 2012
Paulo Gabuat

Super Reviewer

'A Clockwork Orange'. Dystopia done right through the unapologetic, searing vision of Stanley Kubrick and Malcolm McDowell's eccentric, ultra-violent, in and out, Beethoven-loving portrayal of Alex.

A cure for violence in two weeks sure sounds like a good idea. The cure being the complete dehumanising of a person, removing them of choice by causing a mechanical reaction, that, that is something the Minister does not care about when he can tout such a cure.

As much as it's grand old tale of one person getting what he deserves, the political motivations between the two parties, with Alex as their centrepiece, really comes to the fore in the last third of the film. Exaggerated it may be, but it really is grounded in a sense of realism that this can and does happen in this day and age; the war on terror and its returning soldiers a prime example.

The production and costume design create a unique, colourful world from the first frame, not to mention the confronting imagey, with Kubrick weaving the camera around majestically. The source material's quirky language is also done justice, and them some, by McDowell's voice and changes in tone, which is not something I usually pick up on and appreciate.
October 6, 2012
c0up
c0up  

Super Reviewer

    1. Tramp: Go on, do me in, you bastard cowards. I don't want to live anyway...not in a stinking world like this.
    2. Alex: Oh? And what's so stinking about it?
    – Submitted by Alex A (3 months ago)
    1. Alex: 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.
    – Submitted by Alex A (3 months ago)
    1. Psychiatrist: What do you want?
    2. Alex: Uh, no time for the ol' in-out, love. I've just come to read the meter!
    – Submitted by Andrew M (8 months ago)
    1. Alex: I jumped, O my brothers, and I fell hard but I did not snuff it, oh no. If I had snuffed it, I would not be here to tell what I have told.
    – Submitted by Andrew M (8 months ago)
    1. Alex: What are we gonna do? Talk about me sex life?
    – Submitted by Andrew M (8 months ago)
    1. Chief Guard: Are you now, or have you ever been a homosexual?
    2. Alex: No, sir.
    – Submitted by Andrew M (8 months ago)
View all quotes (78)

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Foreign Titles

  • Uhrwerk Orange (DE)
  • Orange mécanique (FR)
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