For some reason Stanley Kubrick seems to be popping up everywhere I visit lately. The first thing I came across was a post on Stanley Kubrick’s first three films, documentaries about a boxing match, a priest, and the Seafarers International Union. He made the shorts in order to strike it rich, though that never really happened.
“Everybody liked it and they said it was good. I thought that I’d get millions of offers–of which I got none, to do anything.”
While it never paid off financially it certainly laid the groundwork for developing his filmmaking style. Further evidence of his eye for capturing people and light is the photographs he took for Look magazine, starting out in 1945 when he was only 17. The images are dark, gritty and film noir-esque. His sense of timing and composition can clearly be seen in his images, All told he ended up taking over 10,0000 negatives.
Finally there’s this beautiful longform piece by Adam Batty who speaks about Stanley Kubrick at length. He writes about Kubrick’s past, his challenges through life and his enduring legacy. This paragraph sums up the whole piece quite well.
With so many Kubrick films now generally accepted as canonical classics, it’s as well to remember the mixed reception many of them received from audiences and critics on first release (and downright negative reviews for The Shining). Although Kubrick acknowledged changing trends and waves within cinema and society – the far out trip of 2001 made during the counter-culture era; the freedom from relaxed censorship of sex and violence at the time of A Clockwork Orange; the rise of new popular horror circa The Shining – he consistently ploughed a very different path to any other contemporary cinema.