Stanley Kubrick movies frustrate and fascinate in equal measure. His eccentricity andobsessive nature are legendary – much to his widow Christiane\'s dismay.
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10 Nov 2008 - 3:32 PM  UPDATED 7 Nov 2012 - 2:33 AM

Kubrick\'s meticulous nature may have drawn out the filmmaking process, affected his
output, put a few actors offside, and broken up a celebrity marriage, but it
also resulted in some of the most memorable screen moments of the century.

This week
SBS is bringing you six of his best...






2001:
A Space Odyssey
(1968)
Sunday November 16, 9.35pm


In spite of its title, Kubrick’s study of evolution hasn’t dated one bit
and is still as engrossing as ever - not just for his (and co-writer Arthur C.
Clarke’s) vision of human evolution, but also for its creation of the one of
the great screen villains: the calm, cunning and calculating computer,
HAL.9000.

Dark Side of the Moon (1998)
Monday November 17, 10.55pm


Director
William Karel originally set out to make a film about Stanley Kubrick, one year
after his death. A conversation with Christiane Kubrick reveals unknown facts
about Kubrick’s involvement in assisting with theatrical elements of the US space
program (positioning of the rocket launcher, spacesuit design etc). The information
causes the filmmaker to ponder how far a person would
go to pursue a powerful image. The
result is an intriguing and provocative documentary that encourages critical
thinking.

Lolita
(1962)
Tuesday
November 18, 11.40pm




Kubrick’s
adaptation of Nabakov’s Lolita (1962)
stands up as a timeless example of understatement and restraint. The stranglehold
of the censors may have aged the title character from a tween to a teen, and prevented
Kubrick from delving into the novel’s most confronting elements, but his deft
use of irony and double entendre leaves an indelible impression.

Barry
Lyndon
(1975)
Wednesday
November 19, 10.35pm



Kubrick
could never be pinned down to a single genre and after the futuristic set
pieces of 2001 and A Clockwork Orange, he turned his
attention to the past, to an 18th Century costume drama. Barry Lyndon is remarkable for its
cinematography and staging, and Kubrick’s desire to shoot scenes by candle
light pioneered new camera lens technology.

The
Shining
(1980)
Thursday November 20, 10.10pm


Again
defying genre, Kubrick tackled madness, isolation and really, really creepy little kids in his
adaptation of Stephen King’s The Shining.
The unsettling stillness of an abandoned hotel is captured in long-held, smooth
camera movements that give an uneasy feeling, and portend of troubled times ahead
for the winter caretaker and his kin...they find out the true meaning of horror
when he’s unable to shake his writer’s block.

Friday November 21, 10.05pm
A
Clockwork Orange
(1971)



A Clockwork Orange is Kubrick’s most divisive film,
for its depiction of an Orwellian society in which criminal instincts are
reconditioned by state-administered 'aversion therapy". A darkly funny parody
of crime and punishment, it divided critics and audiences and was unavailable
in the UK
for 26 years, at Kubrick’s insistence.

Full
Metal Jacket
(1987)
Saturday November 22, 10pm


There’s an
air of familiarity to Full Metal Jacket
and Kubrick’s Vietnam film comes off second best in the inevitable comparisons
with Francis Ford Coppola’s Apocalypse
Now
. However, its strengths lie in the scenes revolving around the gruelling
Marine induction training course, and the archetypal drill sergeant’s efforts
to harness the adrenalin of rage and sex drive and turn the rookie recruits
into Uncle Samurais.

- Fiona
Williams