There seems to be a trend the last few years with a new 4K release of a different Stanley Kubrick movie on an annual basis. I’m definitely not complaining as that means we are closer to a possible new release of Eyes Wide Shut. This year, we are blessed with A CLOCKWORK ORANGE, one of the most polarizing movies out there. It’s a movie embedded in pop culture. It doesn’t matter if you’ve seen it because everyone has heard or seen some kind of reference to it at some point. It’s uncompromising and probably not something that would ever be filmed nowadays. It’s offensive on so many levels, yet is able to present atrocities to viewers on an unexpected artistic vision.
Alex (Malcolm McDowell) and his group of “droogs” run around London, committing various crimes for their own enjoyment. They make their own rules and do as they please. This includes vandalizing property, beating up the homeless, and raping women. These events play out with classical music in the background, most notably Beethoven who is Alex’s favorite. The music is key as it plays an integral part during the film’s second half. Eventually, his troubles catch up to him and Alex finds himself locked up with possible release if he agrees to take part in a science experiment. Newcomers will have to watch to see how the outcome and what questions around morality rise about.
One of the best 4K transfers out belongs to The Shining, another Kubrick classic. That release was probably the first time I watched an older film that could easily be confused as a modern release. It was that good of an upgrade. A CLOCKWORK ORANGE is given the same love when it comes to the video presentation. It has a 2160p HDR transfer and somehow, one of the dirtiest of mainstream cinema is given the purest of clean transfers. There isn’t any kind of contrast boost which is often accused with these upgrades as the color palette retains its natural tones. I really don’t see how this movie will ever look better than it does here.
The main letdown with this release is the lack of a Dolby Atmos track. The film features plenty of action and a memorable score, but fans will have to be okay with the DTS-HD 5.1 Master Audio track. The track actually comes off clear in exposition sequences and has enough oomph to get engaged in the soundtrack. No new features are added to this release but includes the last Blu-ray edition with its accompanying documentaries, minus the bonus disc from the Digibook.
This latest release of A CLOCKWORK ORANGE proves the strengths of HDR transfers are worthy of upgrades and is a must for fans. You can now purchase A CLOCKWORK ORANGE in 4K Ultra HD via purchase from select digital retailers now!