Every year, the United States Library of Congress selects twenty-five nominated films to be preserved for the National Film Registry. While the library’s collection spans an estimated 1.3 million films, only 800 are preserved within this registry, and this year’s nominations feature a handful of films that are of interest to horror and sci-fi fans.
Among this year’s selections is A Clockwork Orange, the 1971 Stanley Kubrick classic starring Malcolm McDowell as Alex, leading his droogs to the wildest of chaotic deeds. Before long, Alex is subjected to crime aversion therapy in the form of the Ludovico technique, in a scene which legitimately scratched MacDowell’s cornea, as he revealed in an interview with The AV Club last year. The film, based on the Anthony Burgess novel of the same name, inspired countless media which followed, including the music video for Rob Zombie’s “Never Gonna Stop (The Red Red Kroovy)” and the name for the industrial band Ludovico Technique. Kubrick’s film adaptation was so stark that he even pulled it from circulation for several years.
Another interesting pick is The Dark Knight, the 2008 Batman film starring Christian Bale and Heath Ledger, with the latter portraying what many consider to be the best and most intense version of The Joker put to film. Directed by Christopher Nolan, this second film in what would become a trilogy has been hailed as one of the finest films ever released, despite the apparent decline that Ledger would take shortly after filming wrapped. Ledger would unfortunately pass away in January 2008 of an overdose, making his outstanding performance as The Joker his last. The film stands as the fourth highest-grossing film of all-time to this day.
The full list of this year’s selections is as follows:
Kid Auto Races at Venice (1914)
The Battle of the Century (1927)
With Car and Camera Around the World (1929)
Cabin in the Sky (1943)
The Man with the Golden Arm (1955)
Lilies of the Field (1963)
A Clockwork Orange (1971)
Sweet Sweetback’s Baadasssss Song (1971)
The Blues Brothers (1980)
Losing Ground (1982)
The Joy Luck Club (1993)
The Devil Never Sleeps (1994)
Buena Vista Social Club (1999)
The Ground (1993-2001)
Mauna Kea: Temple Under Siege (2006)
The Hurt Locker (2008)
The Dark Knight (2008)
Freedom Riders (2010)
Read the full press release, which includes information on all of this year’s preservation selections, on the Library of Congress website.