The Stanley Kubrick Website (unofficial website)

Short films and Fear and Desire (1953

In 1951, encouraged by a high school friend, Alex Singer, Kubrick made a few short documentaries, beginning with The March of Time newsreels sold to movie theatres. His first was the independently financed Day of the Fight (1951), notable for using reverse tracking shot, later to become one of Kubrick's characteristic camera movements. Inspired by this early success, Kubrick quit his job at Look and began work on others, including, Flying Padre (1951) and The Seafarers (1953), Kubrick's first color film. These three films constitute Kubrick's only surviving documentary works, although some historians believe he made others. He also served as second unit director on an episode of the TV show, Omnibus, about Abraham Lincoln, clips of which are included in the documentary Stanley Kubrick: A Life in Pictures (2001). Kubrick knew he could make a film for much less than the company was paying other filmmakers, telling an interviewer, "I can't believe it costs that much to make eight or nine minutes of film". He began learning all he could about filmmaking on his own, calling film suppliers, laboratories, and equipment rental houses. Kubrick decided to make a short film documentary about a boxer, the same one he wrote a story about for Look a year earlier. He rented a camera and produced a 16-minute black-and-white documentary, Day of the Fight. To supplement his income to pay for the production, he sometimes played competition chess in Washington Square. And to save on cost, he handled various duties for the film: "I was cameraman, director, editor, assistant editor, sound effects man—you name it, I did it. It was invaluable experience, because being forced to do everything myself I gained a sound and comprehensive grasp of all the technical aspects of filmmaking." Film historian Paul Duncan notes that the film was "remarkably accomplished for a first film", and was notable for using the reverse tracking shot Some who worked on the film alongside Kubrick observed his production style: "Stanley was very stoic, impassive but imaginative type person with strong, imaginative thoughts. He commanded respect in a quiet, shy way. Whatever he wanted, you complied, he just captivated you. Anybody who worked with Stanley did just what Stanley wanted".

Fear and Desire (1953)

Fear and Desire (1953), Kubrick's first feature film, was a low- budget production about a team of soldiers caught behind enemy lines in a fictional war. Kubrick and his wife Toba Metz were the only crew on the film, which was written by his friend Howard Sackler. It garnered some respectable reviews but was still a commercial failure. Kubrick was later embarrassed by the film as an amateur effort and tried to keep it out of circulation. He called it a "bumbling, amateur film exercise ... a completely inept oddity, boring and pretentious." The film is said to demonstrate Kubrick's early interest in warfare and, observes film historian James Naremore, "He's especially interested in how rational, militaristic planning spins out of control and becomes irrational." Kubrick's later films expressed different aspects of that same theme, including Paths of Glory, Dr. Strangelove, and Full Metal Jacket. The film was shown on television for the first time on Turner Classic Movies in December 2011, and four of his early films, including this one, became available in the fall of 2012.

Early directing

 "Stanley was very stoic, impassive but imaginative type person with strong, imaginative thoughts. He commanded respect in a quiet, shy way. Whatever he wanted, you complied, he just captivated you. Anybody who worked with Stanley did just what Stanley wanted"
Stanley Kubrick Early films (1951-53)
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Short films and Fear and

Desire (1953

In 1951, encouraged by a high school friend, Alex Singer, Kubrick made a few short documentaries, beginning with The March of Time newsreels sold to movie theatres. His first was the independently financed Day of the Fight (1951), notable for using reverse tracking shot, later to become one of Kubrick's characteristic camera movements. Inspired by this early success, Kubrick quit his job at Look and began work on others, including, Flying Padre (1951) and The Seafarers (1953), Kubrick's first color film. These three films constitute Kubrick's only surviving documentary works, although some historians believe he made others. He also served as second unit director on an episode of the TV show, Omnibus, about Abraham Lincoln, clips of which are included in the documentary Stanley Kubrick: A Life in Pictures (2001). Kubrick knew he could make a film for much less than the company was paying other filmmakers, telling an interviewer, "I can't believe it costs that much to make eight or nine minutes of film". He began learning all he could about filmmaking on his own, calling film suppliers, laboratories, and equipment rental houses. Kubrick decided to make a short film documentary about a boxer, the same one he wrote a story about for Look a year earlier. He rented a camera and produced a 16-minute black-and-white documentary, Day of the Fight. To supplement his income to pay for the production, he sometimes played competition chess in Washington Square. And to save on cost, he handled various duties for the film: "I was cameraman, director, editor, assistant editor, sound effects man—you name it, I did it. It was invaluable experience, because being forced to do everything myself I gained a sound and comprehensive grasp of all the technical aspects of filmmaking." Film historian Paul Duncan notes that the film was "remarkably accomplished for a first film", and was notable for using the reverse tracking shot Some who worked on the film alongside Kubrick observed his production style: "Stanley was very stoic, impassive but imaginative type person with strong, imaginative thoughts. He commanded respect in a quiet, shy way. Whatever he wanted, you complied, he just captivated you. Anybody who worked with Stanley did just what Stanley wanted".

Fear and Desire (1953)

Fear and Desire (1953), Kubrick's first feature film, was a low-budget production about a team of soldiers caught behind enemy lines in a fictional war. Kubrick and his wife Toba Metz were the only crew on the film, which was written by his friend Howard Sackler. It garnered some respectable reviews but was still a commercial failure. Kubrick was later embarrassed by the film as an amateur effort and tried to keep it out of circulation. He called it a "bumbling, amateur film exercise ... a completely inept oddity, boring and pretentious." The film is said to demonstrate Kubrick's early interest in warfare and, observes film historian James Naremore, "He's especially interested in how rational, militaristic planning spins out of control and becomes irrational." Kubrick's later films expressed different aspects of that same theme, including Paths of Glory, Dr. Strangelove, and Full Metal Jacket. The film was shown on television for the first time on Turner Classic Movies in December 2011, and four of his early films, including this one, became available in the fall of 2012.

Early directing

 "Stanley was very stoic, impassive but imaginative type person with strong, imaginative thoughts. He commanded respect in a quiet, shy way. Whatever he wanted, you complied, he just captivated you. Anybody who worked with Stanley did just what Stanley wanted"
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