Stanley Kubrick’s Career Was Propelled by Box Office Success More Than by Critics

It’s mid-summer.

Normally we’d be covering the openings of “The Forever Purge” and “Ghostbusters: Afterlife,” with “Minions: Rise of Gru” in its second weekend competing for #1.

As usual, all franchise titles, likely all hits.Thirty-three years ago on the same weekend, another “franchise” was #2.

His name was Stanley Kubrick, and “Full Metal Jacket,” his 12th film, went wide and began its successful road to profit.The master filmmaker’s first release in seven years, “Jacket” continued his fruitful exclusive relationship with Warner Bros.

(similar to the studio’s ties with Clint Eastwood and Christopher Nolan).

Atypically for the season and the studio, it started as a limited release on June 26, then expanded on July 10.

12 years later his posthumously released “Eyes Wide Shut” opened on July 16.

It’s impossible imagining either going in summer or even being made.Kubrick’s ability to make such esoteric films didn’t happen in a vacuum.

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