Stanley KubrickUSA184 minutes1975ColourEnglish
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Rising from the ashes of Stanley Kubrick's scuttled epic about Napoleon, this adaptation of William Thackeray's 1844 novel stars Ryan O'Neal as the unscrupulous Irish social climber who scams and schemes his way into the ranks of the 18th-century English aristocracy. Kubrick's stress on historical authenticity and painstakingly accurate detail — he famously developed specialized photographic techniques to film interior scenes lit only by candlelight — results in one of the most stunning recreations of a bygone era in film history. While the film's painterly style and measured pacing earned it some decidedly mixed reviews upon its original release, like many of Kubrick's films Barry Lyndon has been considerably re-evaluated over the years, with many critics now considering it one of the director's greatest achievements.