A walk through the Stanley Kubrick exhibit

Highlighting the creative genius's lifework

Stanley Kubrick was most famous for his artistic genius, creating some of the most controversial films of our time. Now he has his life’s work on display at the TIFF Bell Lightbox.

This exhibit features original props from movie sets, shooting materials, set designs, costumes, rejection letters and Kubrick’s most beloved chess board.

Each room was specially designed to coordinate with the associated movie, organizing each film chronologically to show Kubrick’s life work.

The Toronto Observer joined Jesse Wente, Director of Film Programmes at TIFF for an inside tour.

“The movie A Clockwork Orange, proved so controversial, that in 1974 after several threats to his family – Kubrick and Warner Brothers made the decision to pull the film from circulation in the UK, where it remained to be seen for 25 years until they had re-released it after his death in 1999,” he said, walking through the room staged as A Clockwork Orange.

Kubrick was stern while making decisions on-set and sticking to them, no matter what the circumstances.

Wente added that he feels this had, in some way, contributed to Kubrick’s success.

“Some of the controversy was definitely a challenge. I feel that the personal attacks on his family after A Clockwork Orange must have been most unnerving. When you get an ‘X’ rating, that’s bad. Most theaters won’t show an X-rated film, so it keeps you out of a lot of cinemas,” he said, “He was never happy with those kind of decisions but then again he didn’t edit his movies. Even when they said, ‘we’re going to give you an X rating’ he wouldn’t change them. I think ultimately it helped him in the long run.”

Inside the exhibit (perhaps its most impressive feature), is the re-creation of The Shining’s Overlook Hotel, which has replicated every detail from the doors, to the infamous octagonal carpet. Original props from the movie, including the twins’ faint, blood-stained dresses can also be seen.

Laurel MacMillan, Director of exhibits at TIFF, tells The Toronto Observer that she had a great time constructing an ‘interactive atmosphere’ for the exhibition guests.

“Just to see the items alone can be a little inert. So, I think the fact that people get to see them up close and personal, to really experience it, will give them something to remember, since Kubrick’s movies were so memorable,” she said.

The Stanley Kubrick exhibit at the TIFF Bell Lightbox opened on Oct. 31, 2014 and will stay open until Jan. 25, 2014.


About this article

By: Valerie McDermott
Copy editor: Brad Garcia
Posted: Nov 20 2014 10:44 am
Filed under: Arts & Life