A Clockwork Orange, Stanley Kubrick‘s 1971 dystopian cult crime film needs no introduction.

Kubrick, basing his film on Anthony Burgess’s 1962 novel of the same name, rocked the film industry with his use of disturbing, violent, psychotic images.

“A social satire dealing with the question of whether behavioural psychology and psychological conditioning are dangerous new weapons for a totalitarian government to use to impose vast controls on its citizens and turn them into little more than robots,” Kubrick once in Saturday Review when asked to describe the film. “It is a story of the dubious redemption of a teenage delinquent by condition-reflex therapy. It is, at the same time, a running lecture on free-will,” he continued.

The film was met with initial fury as its controversial and explicit sexual scenes were deemed too extreme for cinema. Despite initially being passed for UK cinema in the December 1971, the film was withdrawn from British release in 1973 by Warner Brothers at the request of Kubrick in response to allegations that the film was responsible for copycat violence.

Following the release of A Clockwork Orange, Kubrick was banned from England and received death threats. It was those threats that forced the pioneering director to leave the country and find new locations to film.

“The screen is a magic medium. It has such power that it can retain interest as it conveys emotions and moods that no other art form can hope to tackle,” Kubrick was said in reaction.

And his words rang true. Despite the controversy, the film went on to dominate awards season which saw it up for Best Picture at the Oscars before eventually losing out to The French Connection. 

Starring the likes of Malcolm McDowell, Adrienne Corri, Patrick Magee, Michael Bates and Warren Clarke, we dive behind the scenes at the making of one of the world’s most iconic cult films:

(Images via Dangerous Minds)

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