In A Clockwork Orange, characters view and use art in many different ways, creating a complex and conflicted picture of how art and real life interact.

Alex uses music, film, and art to express and understand his life.

He plays with our perceptions so that we never forget we are watching a work of art.

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The freedom of individuals to make choices becomes problematic when those choices undermine the safety and stability of society, and in A Clockwork Orange, the state is willing to protect society by taking away freedom of choice and replacing it with prescribed good behavior.

In Alex’s world, both the unfettered power of the individual and the unfettered power of the state prove dangerous.

Throughout A Clockwork Orange, the film forces us to weigh the values and dangers of both individual liberty and state control, and consider how much liberty we’re willing to give up for order, and how much order we’re willing to give up for liberty.

The importance of evil as well as good in human nature is a fundamental theme of A Clockwork Orange.

He cites the suffering Alex causes his victims as evidence for his argument’s merit, but the minister’s own misuse of power, such as hiring thugs as policemen and imprisoning political opponents, undermines his argument. Alexander, on the other hand, argues for the protection of individual liberty, but he weakens his own argument with his willingness to sacrifice Alex’s life and liberty in order to further his party’s agenda.

The prison chaplain seems more sincere in his defense of the right of individuals to make moral choices, equating the ability to choose with being human, but his willful ignorance of Alex’s true destructive potential makes him seem almost naïve.

Through his characters, Kubrick suggests that dark impulses are a fundamental part of human nature.

Human destructiveness and power-lust don’t go away with proper conditioning, except when that conditioning is so extreme that it makes us inhuman.

Alexander stand on the other, supporting freedom of choice, even with the negative consequences that go with it.

The minister of the interior argues that government should have the power to bring law and order to the streets, and that questions of individual liberty are insignificant compared with the values of safety and order.

Kubrick makes sex and violence look unreal in the film.