The timeless quality of Stanley Kubrick’s films didn’t arrive by accident. As a young man, his passion for photography was driven by a profound belief in the power of the image to convey the many nuances of the human condition. The reason that he pushed both technology and his actors to their limits and beyond was to ensure that every moment of his films conveyed an emotional message-a quality his legion of fans love him for.
While this style of filmmaking is geared towards packing an emotional punch, it doesn’t mean that it is without depth or nuance. Far from it-in fact, Kubrick’s films are some of the most carefully thought out, and thought provoking, in existence. His works consist of a multiplicity of layers working together to create a singular experience, and while an audience is initially likely to be absorbed by his arresting style, subsequent reflection will inevitably be drawn to the questions those sights and sounds raise. While Kubrick’s personal ideas and intentions were built into his films, he deliberately, perhaps mischievously, installed a margin of ambiguity, such that they remain, today, among the most studiously interpreted and hotly debated films of the modern era.
Here, then, are ten characteristically Kubrickian head-scratchers.
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