Barry Lyndon (1975)

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Barry Lyndon is a 1975 period drama film by Stanley Kubrick, based on the 1844 novel The Luck of Barry Lyndon by William Makepeace Thackeray. It stars Ryan O'Neal, Marisa Berenson, Patrick Magee, Leonard Rossiter and Hardy Krüger. The film recounts the early exploits and later unravelling of a fictional 18th-century Irish rogue and opportunist who marries a rich widow to climb the social ladder and assume her late husband's aristocratic position.

Kubrick began production on Barry Lyndon after his 1971 film, A Clockwork Orange. Kubrick had originally intended to direct a biopic on Napoleon, but lost his financing due to the commercial failure of the similar film, Waterloo. Kubrick eventually directed Barry Lyndon, set during the Seven Years' War, utilising his research from his Napoleon project. Filming lasted roughly 8 months, beginning in December 1973, and took place in the United Kingdom, Ireland, and Germany.

The film's cinematography has been described as ground-breaking. Especially notable are the long double shots, usually ended with a slow backwards zoom, the scenes shot entirely in candlelight, and the settings based on William Hogarth paintings. The exteriors were filmed on location in Ireland, England and Germany, with the interiors shot mainly in London. The production was troubled; there were problems related to logistics, weather, and even politics (Kubrick feared that he might be an IRA hostage target), while the relationship between Kubrick and O'Neal was especially fraught and difficult. O'Neal's performance and perceived lack of on-screen depth and ability to portray a character arc have been repeatedly criticised.

Barry Lyndon won four Oscars in production categories at the 1975 Academy Awards. Although some critics took issue with the film's glacial pace and restrained emotion, like many of Kubrick's works, its reputation has strengthened over time, with many now regarding it as one of his greatest achievements.

(Summary from Wikipedia)

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