New Interview: Malcolm McDowell On 'Clockwork Orange' Torture & Controversy
By David Weiner
In Part 2 of ETonline's exclusive sit-down with A Clockwork Orange legend Malcolm McDowell, the actor defends director Stanley Kubrick's decision to pull the film from U.K. theaters during its first run back in 1971 following a string of copycat crimes, and reveals that the eye torture he endured for the film's Ludovico Technique was indeed just that -- torture. Watch the video...
"I didn't feel it at the time, my eyes were anesthetized," says McDowell, now 70 years old, of the 10-minute take that he endured for the film, his eyes forced open with metal clamps. "In the car going home -- I don't know if you've ever scratched your corneas, you don't want to do it -- I don't think I've ever experienced pain like that before. It was horrible. It was like being cut with razor blades."
In Clockwork, McDowell stars as Alex, a young, Beethoven-loving, good-time-having hooligan with a tendency to commit "ultra-violence" along with his "droog" pals in future England. When he's caught in the act and accused of murder, he volunteers for a radical experiment that may have far-worse consequences than he ever imagined.