LACMA and The Academy will co-present the first US retrospective exhibition of Stanley Kubrick. The retrospective, which launched in Frankfurt and has toured Berlin, Melbourne, Ghent, Zurich, Rome, Paris, and Amsterdam, was developed in collaboration with the Kubrick Estate and the Deutsches Filmmuseum, Frankfurt, but will be designed specifically for LACMA by film production designer Patti Podesta. The exhibition provides access and insight into the filmmaker’s vision and methods that led to his universally adored masterpieces, from “Full Metal Jacket,” “Lolita” and “Dr. Strangelove” to “2001: A Space Odyssey,” “A Clockwork Orange” and “The Shining.” LACMA board member Terry Semel worked closely with Kubrick on many of these films when he was running Warner Bros. Pictures (one little known fact: Kubrick spawned the modern box office report.)
The film retrospective kicks off on November 7 with “An Academy Salute to Stanley Kubrick,” hosted by actor Malcolm McDowell and featuring many Kubrick colleages and collaborators. LACMA’s exhibition and the Bing Theater film retrospective will follow.
Folks continue to be excited by Kubrick. Steven Spielberg took over “A.I.” Artificial Intelligence” after the filmmaker’s death in 1999; he rewrote one of the scripts based on the Brian Aldiss story. Kubrick’s iconic “2001: A Space Odyssey” is Number 6 on the latest Sight & Sound Top 50, and influenced more films than its most recent obvious descendant, Ridley Scott’s “Prometheus,” which features a HAL-like sentient robot. “Room 237,” a doc laying out many theories behind the meaning of “The Shining,” has been building buzz since its January Sundance debut; IFC Midnight has booked it into Fantastic Fest. At least three unmade Kubrick films are in active development. Here’s a story about how the photograph at right came to be.
Kubrick is on my top ten directors of all time list (along with John Ford, Akira Kurosawa, Buster Keaton, Howard Hawks, Orson Welles, Alfred Hitchcock, Billy Wilder, Jean Renoir, and David Lean.) I placed “A Clockwork Orange” at number 10 on my Sight & Sound ballot after seeing it again on Blu-ray; before that I would have chosen “2001.” What are your fave Kubrick films? See our poll and my ranking on the jump.
LACMA’s Michael Govan states:
“By featuring this legendary filmmaker and his oeuvre in his first retrospective within the context of an art museum, Stanley Kubrick will reevaluate how we define the artist in the twenty-first century, and simultaneously expand upon LACMA’s commitment to exploring the intersection of art and film. We are also pleased to honor Kubrick’s impact on film and art history at our 2012 Art + Film Gala, along with artist Ed Ruscha, on October 27.”
Academy CEO Dawn Hudson adds that the collaboration is “a taste of things to come when we open the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures in the historic Wilshire May Company building on the LACMA campus.”
The Los Angeles presentation of the retrospective is funded by Steve Tisch. More below:
Kubrick’s films will be represented through a thoughtful selection of archival material, annotated scripts, photography, costumes, cameras and equipment, set models, original promotional materials, and props. The interdisciplinary exhibition draws attention to Kubrick’s fixation with historical research and his visionary adaptations of influences from the fine arts, design, and architecture, and enables visitors to experience the cinematic journey of one of the great artists of the twentieth century. The exhibition also includes sections dedicated to projects that were never completed, as well as to the special effects (visual and auditory) developed by Kubrick and his team.
Here’s my ranking of the 12 Kubrick films between 1955’s “Killer’s Kiss” and 1999’s “Eyes Wide Shut”: What’s your favorite?
1. A Clockwork Orange
2. Dr. Strangelove
3. 2001: A Space Odyssey
4. Paths of Glory
5. The Shining
6. Barry Lyndon
9. The Killing
10. Full Metal Jacket
11. Eyes Wide Shut
12. Killer’s Kiss