UK Premiere: Fear & Desire
Image courtesy of Kino Lorber

UK Premiere: Fear & Desire

classified 12

Restored & Rediscovered


Please note: This was screened in July 2023

Stanley Kubrick
Frank Silvera, Paul Mazursky
70 mins, 1953, USA

Stanley Kubrick has long been held as one of the great filmmakers of his or indeed any generation. Whether it is the formal innovation of his filmmaking, the ambitious scale of his vision or the underlying themes, his filmography sets an exactingly high bar on the very idea of the cinematic.

It is all too easy – if somewhat justifiable - to imbue Kubrick with the myth of the great director whose every work is in some way a fully formed, rigorously conceived and constructed, masterpiece. So, it is intriguing to see the early-career director’s original cut of his first feature film which he quickly re-edited following negative audience reaction.

Whilst ostensibly a war movie, Fear & Desire follows four soldiers who have crash landed behind enemy lines. For decades, the 62-minute version was all that existed which a still dissatisfied Kubrick withheld from release throughout his lifetime. Recently the Library of Congress came into possession of the original 70-minute cut, which was the version which premiered at the Venice Film Festival, on August 18, 1952, under the title Shape of Fear.

Restored in 4K in 2023 by Kino Lorber in collaboration with Library of Congress using 35mm OCN and 35mm FGM (original cut negative/fine grain master).

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