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Rants And Raves: “Dr. Strangelove”

Celebrating Kubrick And Revisiting The LACMA Exhibit

Above: Photos of the shot but never used pie fight in the War Room for the end of "Dr. Strangelove."

This year marks the 50th anniversary of Stanley Kubrick's brilliant "Dr. Strangelove Or How I Learned To Stop Worrying And Love The Bomb." You can see it Thursday as part of the Whistle Stop's Shot by Shot film series.

When you think of filmmaker Stanley Kubrick, you tend to think of words like intelligent, meticulous, challenging. His talents have never been better displayed than in the savagely funny satire, "Dr. Strangelove." From Peter Sellers' soft spoken president announcing, "Gentlemen, you can't fight in here. This is the War Room," to Slim Pickens memorable final ride on the bomb to bring on the end of the world, this film is vividly memorable. It also holds up remarkably well. Made in 1964, it's still as sharp as the day it opened in its political commentary. Part of the success may lie in the fact that Kubrick chose to shoot it in a black and white, documentary style that seems very contemporary. Add to to that the Terry Southern-Peter George savvy screenplay and the pitch perfect ensemble cast and you have a true classic. This film is delicious fun and exceptionally well-crafted. You feel that there is thought behind every detail you see on screen. You also have some of the finest work by George C. Scott and Peter Sellers (in three roles).

The upcoming screening also gave me an excuse to post the photos of my trip to the Los Angeles County Museum of Art's Kubrick exhibit from last year. It was a stellar exhibit that could be enjoyed by the casual Kubrick viewer to the most devout fan. There were props, costumes, behind the scenes photos, script pages with Kubrick's annotations, and some insights and analysis. You could easily spend hours wandering through the exhibit. It was beautifully mounted, with items displayed effectively and some you could even touch.

Here's a photo gallery of the exhibit that may whet your appetite for seeing "Dr. Strangelove" on its half-century anniversary.

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