Got a CLOCKWORK BLURAY yet?
This is a magnificent film. It has survived being demonized, banned, the commercial trivialization of it's startling imagery and massive advancements in film-making technology that could have made it seem old fashioned. Lastly it has been endlessly imitated, payed homage to and contains themes that have been addressed powerfully by many other films. Yet A Clockwork Orange endures, moves, maddens, disturbs, disgusts and provokes with not a hint that it's ability to do so will ever abate.
Charges of misanthropy (Alex is the only remotely likable character in the film) miss the point of Kubrick's relentlessly satiric vision. The government is corrupt, parents disavow their responsibilities, liberals can't forgive the wrongs done to them as they attempt to address the wrongs done to others, the clergy are drunkards and everyone around Alex is just as interested in a bit of the old in-and-out and the old ultra-violence as he ever was. They simply do it under cover of the social institutions that give them power. Power, indeed, is an end unto itself, for those attempting to control Alex.
Despite using the American edition of Burgess' novel as a guide rather than the original British one, which contains an extra chapter in which Alex reforms on his own, Kubrick does manage to stay true to Burgess main point. Morality can't be forced because of the very nature of and need for choice. And to reinforce this point Kubrick hammers home the absurdity. Alex is ultimately a pawn. No one around him really cares about him but only what they can get out of him. This is the ultimate ultra-violence, an individual eaten one piece at a time by the world around him rather than loved, forgiven, fed, clothed sheltered, shown compassion, forgiven again etc. etc. It is the self who is the ultimate victim in Kubrick's film.
For those who already have the original extras packed bluray release this edition only has one new feature, but it's a good one. Jan Harlan's Stanley Kubrick: A Life in Pictures arrives in HD on a second Bluray. That plus everything else makes this the definitive edition of the film. The digibook packaging is a real plus here as well. Some will complain about the image quality but friends I gotta tell you this is one great looking bluray and I had no complaints at all.