I have always been particularly intrigued by films whose beginnings contrast with their endings in terms of both tone and themes. If there is a genre that I have explored the least thus far, it is war, but Stanley Kubrick’s Full Metal Jacket is much more than a war film; it presents themes which illustrate the psychological anguish that comes with serving in the military.
Mike Flanagan takes on the job of adapting Stephen King’s novel, titled Doctor Sleep, but there is a catch: Flanagan’s film exists in the same universe as Stanley Kubrick’s adaptation of King’s The Shining. As soon as I was cognizant of this information, my feelings toward it were already conflicted. I was not going to criticize the film without having seen it, however—but, now that I have, I feel that it is appropriate for me to proceed with what I am going to say.
Paul Thomas Anderson’s Magnolia comprises multiple co-existent storylines, which are ultimately intertwined in different ways. The characters are tethered to each other somehow through various relationships, whether that be familial, romantic, friendly, or otherwise. Every one of these characters has something in common: they all represent a form of childhood trauma. The long-term effects of their troubled upbringings are presented rawly (one can argue that it is rather heavy-handed, though I disagree for reasons I will mention later), regarding thorny subject matters such as drug addiction, promiscuity, and molestation. When you look into the characters, you are supposed to see children who were, or are being exposed to the perils of the real world far too early.
The Shining is not only arguably Stanley Kubrick's most notable film throughout his entire 48-year directorial career, but it is considered to be one of the most beloved cult classic horror films of all-time. There are many things to know about the story that Kubrick adapted from Stephen King's 1977 source material of the same title, but there are also plenty of things to know about what happened behind the scenes.
if…. was my introduction to Lindsay Anderson’s filmography, so upon my first viewing I was not at all familiar with his caliber as a director. The only name I really recognized in the cast was Malcolm McDowell, who gave one of my personal favorite performances in 1971 as Alexander DeLarge in Stanley Kubrick’s A Clockwork Orange. In this film, however, he plays an entirely different type of role from the notable one he would take on three years later—and it could possibly be his darkest.