Stanley Kubrick

Stanley Kubrick – Spartacus [+Extras] (1960)

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Review from the Criterion website :
Stanley Kubrick directed a cast of screen legends—including Kirk Douglas as the indomitable gladiator that led a Roman slave revolt—in the sweeping epic that defined a genre and ushered in a new Hollywood era. The assured acting, lush Technicolor cinematography, bold costumes, and visceral fight sequences won Spartacus four Oscars; the blend of politics and sexual suggestion scandalized audiences. Today Kubrick’s controversial classic, the first film to openly defy Hollywood’s blacklist, remains a landmark of cinematic artistry and history. Read More »

Stanley Kubrick – Lolita (1962)

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Quote:
“How did they make a movie out of Lolita?” teased the print ads of this Stanley Kubrick production. The answer: by adding three years to the title character’s age. The original Vladimir Nabokov novel caused no end of scandal by detailing the romance between a middle-aged intellectual and a 12-year-old nymphet. The affair is “cleansed” ever so slightly in the film by making Lolita a 15-year-old (portrayed by 16-year-old Sue Lyon). In adapting his novel to film, Nabokov downplayed the wicked satire and sensuality of the material, concentrating instead on the story’s farcical aspects. James Mason plays professor Humbert Humbert, who while waiting to begin a teaching post in the United States rents a room from blowzy Shelley Winters. Winters immediately falls for the worldly Humbert, but he only has eyes for his landlady’s nubile daughter Lolita. The professor goes so far as to marry Winters so that he can remain near to the object of his ardor. Turning up like a bad penny at every opportunity is smarmy TV writer Quilty (Peter Sellers), who seems inordinately interested in Humbert’s behavior. When Winters happens to read Humbert’s diary, she is so revolted by his lustful thoughts that she runs blindly into the street, where she is struck and killed by a car.
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Jan Harlan – Stanley Kubrick: A Life in Pictures (2001)


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Description: Narrated by Tom Cruise, “Stanley Kubrick: A Life in Pictures” goes through each one of his movies and talks to various participants about their memories of working with Kubrick. For those who know very little about Kubrick, the documentary is an excellent career overview. Read More »

Stanley Kubrick – Flying Padre (1951)

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Quote:
Shortly after Stanley Kubrick had completed his first film for RKO – the short subject Day of the Fight (1951) – the studio offered him a follow-up project for their Screenliner series which specialized in short human-interest documentaries. The subject of their proposal was the Reverend Fred Stadmueller, a priest at Saint Joseph’s Church in Mosquero, New Mexico. Known to his parishioners as the “Flying Padre” because he owned a small, single-engine plane that allowed him to visit his church members who were spread out over a four thousand mile area, Stadmueller was an inspiration to the mostly Spanish-American farmers and ranchers who made up his congregation. Read More »

Stanley Kubrick – 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968)

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A mind-bending sci-fi symphony, Stanley Kubrick’s landmark 1968 epic pushed the limits of narrative and special effects toward a meditation on technology and humanity.

The first movement of the symphony of 2001 is titled “The Dawn of Man.” After being chased away from a water hole by a group of rival apes, a band of apes is forever changed by the arrival of a stone monolith that seems to spark them to conceive of the use of tools.

The second movement takes place millions of years later, in 2001. A similar monolith has been discovered buried on the moon, and the chairman of the equivalent of NASA is sent in to control the situation.

The third movement is eighteen months later, as a manned ship journeys to Jupiter, where the second monolith is sending a radio signal. This ship is controlled by a cutting-edge HAL 9000 computer, which is capable of thought but also of eluding human control. Read More »

Stanley Kubrick – Eyes Wide Shut [Uncut] (1999)

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Synopsis: The final work of legendary director Stanley Kubrick, who died within a week of completing the edit, stars Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman, at the time Hollywood’s most bankable celebrity couple, and was shot on a open-ended schedule (finally totaling over 400 days), with closed sets in London standing in for New York City. Cruise and Kidman play William and Alice Harford, a physician and a gallery manager who are wealthy, successful, and travel in a sophisticated social circle; however, a certain amount of decadence crosses their paths on occasion, and a visit to a formal-dress party leads them into sexual temptation when William is drafted into helping a beautiful girl who has overdosed on drugs while Alice is charmed by a man bent on seduction. While neither William and Alice act on their adulterous impulses, once the issue has been brought into the open, it begins a dangerous season of erotic gamesmanship for the couple, with William in particular openly confronting his desire for new sexual experiences. What didn’t make the final cut of Eyes Wide Shut may have been as fascinating as what finally appeared on screen: Harvey Keitel was replaced almost immediately by Sydney Pollack, while Jennifer Jason Leigh was replaced by Marie Richardson after she had shot all her scenes and left town. -Mark Deming (AMG) Read More »

Stanley Kubrick – Barry Lyndon (1975)

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Synopsis
BARRY LYNDON is Stanley Kubrick’s epic costume drama based on William Makepeace Thackeray’s picaresque novel. It tells the story of a young rogue who wanders through life getting lost in various adventures, meeting his share of women and oddball characters. When Redmond Barry (Ryan O’Neal, trying desperately to maintain an Irish brogue) becomes jealous of Captain Quin’s advances on Barry’s beloved cousin, he challenges the man to a duel. Winning the duel, young Barry is forced to leave his home and his mother, and off on his adventures he goes. He meets thieves, lonely soldier brides, Prussian army leaders, and British widows, inventing new stories about himself at every turn of the road. BARRY LYNDON is lush and magnificent, sparkling with color, every frame reminiscent of the finest European art. The blues of the Prussian army uniforms and the reds of the British contrast sharply with the majestic green land and mountains in nearly every background. Kubrick often begins a shot close in, then zooms out to reveal the beautiful natural landscape and ornate rooms surrounding the now seemingly insignificant characters. With rousing performances from O’Neal, Marisa Berenson, Hardy Kruger, and Leonard Rossiter, jaw-dropping camerawork, spectacular natural lighting, and a marvelous classical-music soundtrack painstakingly put together by Kubrick, BARRY LYNDON is a dramatic romantic epic that may be Kubrick’s most beautiful film. Read More »