PRODUCTION DESIGN PORN: The Gold Standard, Stanley Kubrick


Stanley Kubrick in his younger years

Stanley Kubrick (1928-1999) is one of the most beloved filmmakers of all time, with a whopping 6 titles on IMDb’s Top 250  Movies list despite only winning one Oscar for Best Visual Effects for 2001: A Space Odyssey. This quote from a 1968 Playboy interview with Kubrick accurately captures his World view but also the themes that made his films so interesting:

The most terrifying fact about the universe is not that it is hostile but that it is indifferent; but if we can come to terms with this indifference and accept the challenges of life within the boundaries of death — however mutable man may be able to make them — our existence as a species can have genuine meaning and fulfillment. However vast the darkness, we must supply our own light.”

In addition to phenomenal themes and stories, the cinematography and production design always complimented each other beautifully in every one of his films and truly encapsulate the spirit of “Production Design Porn”. Sets and mise-en-scène that create a world inside the film that is so beautiful you just want to hit the rewind button and analyze the moving pictures again and again.

The Killing (1956)

Art Director: Ruth Sobotka | Set Decorator: Herry Reif

Paths of Glory (1957)

Art Director: Ludwig Reiber

Spartacus (1960)

Production Designer: Alexander Golitzen | Art Director: Eric Orbom | Set Decorators: Russell A. Gausman, Julia Heron

Lolita (1962)

Art Director: William C. Andrews

Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb (1964)

Production Designer: Ken Adam | Art Director: Peter Murton

2001: A Space Odyssey (1968)

Production Designers: Ernest Archer, Harry Lange, Anthony Masters | Art Director: John Hoesli | Set Decorator: Robert Cartwright

A Clockwork Orange (1971)

Production Designer: John Barry | Art Director: Russell Hagg, Peter Sheilds

Barry Lyndon (1975)

Production Designer:  Ken Adam | Art Director: Roy Walker

The Shining (1980)

Production Designer: Roy Walker | Art Director: Leslie Tomkins

Full Metal Jacket (1987)

Production Designer: Anton Furst | Art Director: Keith Pain, Rod Stratfold, Leslie Tomkins | Set Decorator: Barbara Drake

Eyes Wide Shut (1999)

Production Designer: Leslie Tomkins, Roy Walker | Art Director: John Fenner, Kevin Phipps | Set Decorator:  Lisa Leone, Terry Wells

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Are you a big Stanley Kubrick fan? What movie of his do you think has the best production design?

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Alison.

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3 Comments

Filed under Art Direction, Production Design

3 responses to “PRODUCTION DESIGN PORN: The Gold Standard, Stanley Kubrick

  1. BrendanR

    Every one of Kubrick’s films is stunning visually and the production design of a consistently high order. 2001 takes the gold medal by a nose from Strangelove (IMHO).

  2. the rotating sets of 2001 were an amazing feat of engineering for the time.

  3. Pingback: Who the hell put that there? Artistic Director and Production Designer | RARA

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