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Film

Wes Anderson's favourite Stanley Kubrick movie

@Russellisation

The magical world of Wes Anderson’s frenetic imagination has led to the creation of some of the most vibrant films of modern cinema, from the comedy-caper ingenuity of The Grand Budapest Hotel to the charming grace of Moonrise Kingdom. Ever since his feature film debut in 1996 with Bottle Rocket, Anderson has occupied a significant space among the very best contemporary American filmmakers. 

Praised for his meticulous, idiosyncratic form of filmmaking, Anderson has carved out his very own sub-genre of filmmaking that draws attention to the craft of cinema as well as the iconic actors who occupy its space. Often collaborating with the same Hollywood faces, Anderson has grown a fondness for the likes of Bill Murray, Owen Wilson, Willem Dafoe, Tilda Swinton, Adrien Brody, Edward Norton and Jason Schwartzman, with each one infusing themselves within the fabric of Anderson’s illustrious filmography. 

A favourite of film fans, critics and fellow directors, the likes of Martin Scorsese have praised Anderson, with the filmmaker behind Goodfellas and The Wolf of Wall Street noting Bottle Rocket as the top pick of his filmography. Speaking to Esquire, Scorsese stated, “[Anderson] knows how to convey the simple joys and interactions between people so well and with such richness…This kind of sensibility is rare in movies”. 

When it comes to Wes Anderson’s own list of inspirations, much like his eclectic filmography, he is influenced by a range of directors each with their own creative style. Speaking to Rotten Tomatoes, Anderson listed the films of the Polish-French director Roman Polanski, German-American filmmaker Ernst Lubitsch, the enigmatic Jean Renoir and the classic Hollywood filmmaker Mike Nichols. 

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Included on the list is also the iconic Stanley Kubrick, a filmmaker responsible for some of the finest films of modern cinema including Full Metal Jacket, Eyes Wide Shut and The Shining. When it comes to Wes Anderson’s favourite of Kubrick’s, however, he goes for the provocative drama A Clockwork Orange starring Malcolm McDowell which celebrated its 50th-anniversary last year in 2021. 

Made by a “fully-formed Stanley Kubrick,” as stated by Anderson, the filmmaker adds, “It’s a movie that’s very particularly designed and, you know, conjures up this world that you’ve never seen quite this way in a movie before”. Continuing in his adoration, the Bottle Rocket director further clarifies, “At the same time there’s a great sort of spontaneity to it, and a tremendous energy”. 

Whilst the subject matter of A Clockwork Orange strays far from the usual wheelhouse of Wes Anderson, it’s clear how Kubrick’s film has inspired his style, with a similar freneticism being used throughout his filmography, evident from The Royal Tenenbaums to Isle of Dogs.