OTHER SCIENCE FICTION SERIES

What does the title A Clockwork Orange mean?

POSTED BY: CHRISISALL
UPDATED: Saturday, December 1, 2007 12:35
SHORT URL:
VIEWED: 1967
PAGE 1 of 1

Wednesday, November 28, 2007 11:23 AM

CHRISISALL


Straight question- movie discussion may follow...

Droogisall


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Wednesday, November 28, 2007 11:26 AM

FREDGIBLET


Orang means man in a language where the author was writing the book, it was apparently mistaken as being a misspelled orange so the original meant a clockwork man. The connotations of that title are obvious.

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Wednesday, November 28, 2007 11:34 AM

CHRISISALL


Thanks Fred.
So...did ya like the movie?

Dimisall

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Wednesday, November 28, 2007 11:36 AM

JONGSSTRAW


Don't know for sure.....possibly something to do with drugs...like in the Milk Bar?

I ruined my first VCR many years ago repeatedly trying to play extreme slo-motion of the scene where Alex takes the 2 girls from the record shop back to his room.

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Wednesday, November 28, 2007 11:41 AM

CHRISISALL


Quote:

Originally posted by Jongsstraw:
I ruined my first VCR many years ago repeatedly trying to play extreme slo-motion of the scene where Alex takes the 2 girls from the record shop back to his room.

Silly silly British man.

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Wednesday, November 28, 2007 11:52 AM

FREDGIBLET


Quote:

Originally posted by chrisisall:
So...did ya like the movie?



Yep, haven't read the book yet though.

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Wednesday, November 28, 2007 12:16 PM

CHRISISALL


Quote:

Originally posted by fredgiblet:

Yep, haven't read the book yet though.

This was a strange case where the movie was just as good as the book IMO.

Read it long ago Chrisisall

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Wednesday, November 28, 2007 12:21 PM

WASHNWEAR


Quote:

Originally posted by Jongsstraw:
Don't know for sure.....possibly something to do with drugs...like in the Milk Bar?

I ruined my first VCR many years ago repeatedly trying to play extreme slo-motion of the scene where Alex takes the 2 girls from the record shop back to his room.



CLASSIC! Sounds like something I'd do...

The movie was pretty much a cult thing with the grubby, pre-goth crowd I ran with in high school...saw it umpteen times over my junior and...2nd junior year of high school...haven't seen it since.

Read the book (again, not since HS)...as I recall it was pretty good, and shed some light on the slang/argot they used. I think in the late 80s a version was published with a "lost" final chapter - an "author's cut" I guess you might say. I DID NOT LIKE IT.

Edit: Re the name's meaning, my intel is pretty much the same as FredG.'s, except that "Orange" came from "orang" which is short in some parts for "orangutan"...minor point, since the whole homo sapiens thing remains the same...

Edit Edit: Okay...behold my ignorance...not sure just how much creature territory "homo sapiens" covers, particularly as regards orangutans...but I trust my drift is got (and no big loss if it isn't)...

It was all "great, bolshy yarbles me droogies" when we got here!

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Wednesday, November 28, 2007 12:23 PM

REGINAROADIE


Actually, the title refers to something brought up in the book, but not the movie. It refers to the idea of trying to take something natural and biological and trying to turn it into something man made and precise. To function in a mechanical way. The whole movie is about free will and that by trying to deny something of it's true nature that it always goes wrong. Thus, Alex after being conditioned by the govt to be physically ill when confronted with sex, violence and Ludwig Van is like a clockwork orange.

**************************************************
"And it starts with a sentence that might last a lifetime, or it all might just go down in flames. If I let you know me, then why would you want me? Each day I don't is a shame. Each day I don't is a great shame."

Loudon Wainwright III - "Strange Weirdos" off the "Knocked Up" soundtrack

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Wednesday, November 28, 2007 12:32 PM

THESOMNAMBULIST


No idea. Interesting question. I like ReginaRoadie's explanation though.

Can't say I liked the film. Saw it when I was at college when everyone seemed to like and understand it as though it was a Peter and Jane book!

Never could handle films with rape scenes in them, so can't say I'll be watching it again anytime soon.





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Wednesday, November 28, 2007 12:48 PM

DEEPGIRL187


I read the book when I was in ninth grade I think. Even found a translator online so I could actually understand what they were talking about. Great book from what I remember. Still haven't seen the film though.

*****************************************************

"This is my timey-wimey detector. It goes ding when there's stuff. Also, it can boil an egg at 30 paces, whether you want it to or not, actually, so I've learned to stay away from hens. It's not pretty when they blow."

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Wednesday, November 28, 2007 1:49 PM

FINN MAC CUMHAL


Although many people claim that the title refers to the dangers of forcing structure onto unconformity, I’m not sure that this is really the point, unless we believe that the author is an idiot. In the book, Alex’s unconformity includes murder and the rape of children - hardly what most people would consider natural or appropriate behavior of people in a society. Although we are led to believe that Alex should be sympathized with, only a true moron would.



Nihil est incertius vulgo, nihil obscurius voluntate hominum, nihil fallacius ratione tota comitiorum.

Nothing is more unpredictable than the mob, nothing more obscure than public opinion, nothing more deceptive than the whole political system.

-- Cicero

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Wednesday, November 28, 2007 1:52 PM

FREDGIBLET


Quote:

Originally posted by WASHnwear:
Read the book (again, not since HS)...as I recall it was pretty good, and shed some light on the slang/argot they used. I think in the late 80s a version was published with a "lost" final chapter - an "author's cut" I guess you might say. I DID NOT LIKE IT.



Wasn't really lost, they had it in the UK it was just cut for some reason when it was sent to the US. Funny thing is that it screwed up some sort of symbolism in the number of chapters as well.

Quote:

Edit: Re the name's meaning, my intel is pretty much the same as FredG.'s, except that "Orange" came from "orang" which is short in some parts for "orangutan"...minor point, since the whole homo sapiens thing remains the same...

Edit Edit: Okay...behold my ignorance...not sure just how much creature territory "homo sapiens" covers, particularly as regards orangutans...but I trust my drift is got (and no big loss if it isn't)...



As I understand it (though this is stretching the limits of my knowledge) the Malay word for person includes orangutans, but that's from a half-remembered article on the book so don't take my word for it.

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Thursday, November 29, 2007 5:48 AM

CHRISISALL


Quote:

Originally posted by TheSomnambulist:

Never could handle films with rape scenes in them, so can't say I'll be watching it again anytime soon.

I completely get that, Som.

Chrisisall

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Thursday, November 29, 2007 5:51 AM

CHRISISALL


Quote:

Originally posted by Finn mac Cumhal:
Although we are led to believe that Alex should be sympathized with, only a true moron would.


After I saw the film for the first time, I came away with two thoughts: what a beautifully photographed movie/Alex should have been beaten to death by those homeless dudes under the overpass.

Some anti-heroes are too anti for Chrisisall

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Thursday, November 29, 2007 10:20 AM

DEEPGIRL187


I couldn't in good conscience sympathize with Alex, not by any means. But I think the point was to recognize that if he could be treated in this manner, guilty or no, then it wouldn't be long before they started brutalizing everyday citizens. At least that's what I took from it.

*****************************************************

"This is my timey-wimey detector. It goes ding when there's stuff. Also, it can boil an egg at 30 paces, whether you want it to or not, actually, so I've learned to stay away from hens. It's not pretty when they blow."

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Thursday, November 29, 2007 4:35 PM

FINN MAC CUMHAL


Quote:

Originally posted by deepgirl187:
I couldn't in good conscience sympathize with Alex, not by any means. But I think the point was to recognize that if he could be treated in this manner, guilty or no, then it wouldn't be long before they started brutalizing everyday citizens. At least that's what I took from it.

That’s one way to look at it, but that’s what I meant by thinking that the author was an idiot. It’s sort of silly to argue state oppression against someone who is a murder and rapist of 10 year olds. If you want to argue a theme of state of oppression then give me an Anne Frank story, not some son of a bitch getting exactly what he deserved. I think there must be some satire or some sarcasm there that I’m missing. It’s been a long time since I read the book, and I’m not really sure. Ort it could just be another hippy shooting his mouth off again.




Nihil est incertius vulgo, nihil obscurius voluntate hominum, nihil fallacius ratione tota comitiorum.

Nothing is more unpredictable than the mob, nothing more obscure than public opinion, nothing more deceptive than the whole political system.

-- Cicero

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Friday, November 30, 2007 11:02 AM

TORTIMER


I'm not sure what A Clockwork Orange means but it was and is one of my all time favorite movies. I tried having a lot of my friends watch it after I did and none of them like it though. They all thought I was weird for liking it. When I hear the song "singing in the rain" I always feel like kicking something.

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Saturday, December 1, 2007 6:22 AM

IMNOTHERE


Quote:

Originally posted by Finn mac Cumhal:
Although we are led to believe that Alex should be sympathized with, only a true moron would.



You just (possibly unintentionally) nailed the point. Alex is a nasty piece of work and few people would shed a tear about him being locked up.

...but what if we could cure him instead? Treat his apparent lack of empathy by giving him a prosthetic conscience? Turn him into a good person, a productive member of society? Wouldn't that be better, more humane than locking him up? After all, we live in a society which supposedly values forgiveness.

So Alex walks out of his conditioning, cured - into a society which immediately rejects him, exploits him and tortures him. Turns out society doesn't want a "cure" for evil - it can't forgive - it wants retribution, and eventually decides that its better to "uncure" Alex, to keep him as a threat to justify oppression and retribution.

The big question is whether society's victimization of the "cured" Alex - now repentent, harmless and helpless as a child - is any more defensible that Alex's former crimes. Perhaps the youth crime wave is just a symptom of a society that is sick at all levels?

The oppression is not just that Alex was "programmed" - he was programmed with an unconditional sense of empathy by hypocrites who could suspend their own compassion at the slightest excuse.

(Try the Babylon 5 episode "Passing Through Gethsemane" if you want similar issues without the 'ol ultra violence thrown in).

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Saturday, December 1, 2007 10:52 AM

FREMDFIRMA


Curses, foiled again, and by someone who said it more clearly and in better fashion - thumbs up, ImNotHere.

I'll just note that once again, treating the symptoms rather than the cause is like takin Nyquil for Tuberculosis...

I've always wondered what made the little bastard that way - not that I empathise with him, the way it's written, you *can't* empathise with him, well, unless yer seriously wrong upstairs...

I think that was the point, was Alex really all that very different from the society that obviously produced and created him, that he preyed upon and was preyed upon in the end by ?

Excellent book, completely banned in my highschool, believe it or not - so I wondered why, and did my book report on it as a gesture of snarkery.

Got a B+, too.

-Frem

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Saturday, December 1, 2007 11:03 AM

FINN MAC CUMHAL


Quote:

Originally posted by ImNotHere:
The big question is whether society's victimization of the "cured" Alex - now repentent, harmless and helpless as a child - is any more defensible that Alex's former crimes. Perhaps the youth crime wave is just a symptom of a society that is sick at all levels?

I think you’ve made a very astute description of A Clockwork Orange. Certainly the best I’ve seen so far.



Nihil est incertius vulgo, nihil obscurius voluntate hominum, nihil fallacius ratione tota comitiorum.

Nothing is more unpredictable than the mob, nothing more obscure than public opinion, nothing more deceptive than the whole political system.

-- Cicero

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Saturday, December 1, 2007 11:15 AM

OUT2THEBLACK


Quote:

Originally posted by fredgiblet:
As I understand it (though this is stretching the limits of my knowledge) the Malay word for person includes orangutans, but that's from a half-remembered article on the book so don't take my word for it.



That's pretty nearly correct...I believe

that 'orang-u-tan' translates as 'man of the

forest' or 'man of the jungle'...So , that

interpretation makes sense in the context of

'A Clockwork (engineered) Man'...Didn't this film

make the list of 'dystopian' films that we saw

here recently ?

__________________________________________________

" Will work for Bar Credit at The Brown Coat Pub and Theatre " .

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Saturday, December 1, 2007 12:35 PM

REGINAROADIE


I also concur with that idea. When I watch the movie now, specifically the ending when the refined old man is cutting up Alex's meat and is giving him a very coded message, you get the sense that the gov't is using Alex to cover their asses, and that Alex is more than happy to go along with it to be "cured". That these are two evils using each other so that they can survive.

Maybe in a few years, the meaning behind the scenes and the movie will change again. That's Kubrick's greatest genius as a filmmaker. That you can see any of his movies numerous times and come away with different interpretations of the film. Just like we're seeing here on this thread.

**************************************************
"And it starts with a sentence that might last a lifetime, or it all might just go down in flames. If I let you know me, then why would you want me? Each day I don't is a shame. Each day I don't is a great shame."

Loudon Wainwright III - "Strange Weirdos" off the "Knocked Up" soundtrack

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