Under the sun

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Miles To Go But He Slept

I would not think of quarreling with your interpretation nor offering any other, as I have found it always the best policy to allow the film to speak for itself.
- Stanley Kubrick

If The Shining impressed, Clockwork Orange made me stare in shock and awe, 2001 A Space Odyssey left me speechless and wordless. A masterpiece, irrespective of being dismissed by many at the time of its release. If you think Star Wars or Spielberg's sci-fi movies are the ultimate, 2001 will easily make them look like cartoons. Most of Kubrick's works attained critical acclaim quite a while after the time of their release. Having watched all his movies, I often wonder in dismay why Kubrick hadn't made more movies. Well, he had miles to go, but he just got drowsy and slept, during the postproduction of Eyes Wide Shut in 1999.
His Full Metal Jacket was overshadowed by Oliver Stone's "feel good" film Platoon, his unfinished Artificial Intelligence [A.I], was completed by his 'disciple' Steven Spielberg.
To me, however, its a colossal misfortune that he never got to make what would have been the grandest biopic on Napoleon [played by Jack Nicholson] and Aryan Papers, a movie on the holocaust.

Imagine a battle scene in his Napoleon, were it to be made. Nothing like what we have seen so far, including his own movies. He lets the movie move in its own pace, though he was very economic in his expression in his earlier works. Every frame has an intensity. He lets the images do the talking and smugly sits back . I haven't seen either Sergei Bondarchuk's epic film version of Tolstoy's War and Peace or the Napoleon-themed Waterloo , the release and failure of the two films, respectively, because of which Napoleon was said to be shelved. Yet, i like to think Kubrick would have leaped ahead easily in his work.
Being the son of Polish jews settled in America, he always wanted to make a movie on the holocaust, though he was often haunted by it and wondered if a movie could do justice to the subject. He set to work on Aryan Papers and had even completed the preproduction work when Spielberg's Schindler's List was ready to be released. Allegedly fearing to lose the first-mover advantage, he shelved Aryan Papers also. Later, he would comment on being asked if SL was a holocaust movie,
Think that's about the Holocaust? That was about success, wasn't it? The Holocaust is about six million people who get killed. `Schindler's List' is about 600 who don't
Life isn't fair but indifferent, if not cruel. Kubrick would be the first man to accept and live by this.

P.S: Doesn't all this remind one about our own genius and Marudhanayagam?

Sources: Wiki, this and more....


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