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After the violence spawned by the film, Kubrick kept “A Clockwork Orange” out of circulation in the United Kingdom, his adopted home country, for the rest of his life. He also slowed down creatively. While Kubrick made five films between 1960 and 1971, he would make only four more between 1971 and his death in 1999. It is, of course, impossible to say what the effect of such violence had on the famously cerebral auteur, but it is not unreasonable to wonder how badly he was damaged.

Then there was Martin Scorsese, whose “Taxi Driver” (1976) was cited by John Hinckley Jr. as his inspiration for the attempted assassination of President Reagan in 1981.

After churning out a series of brutal and brutally real dramas — “Mean Streets,” “Taxi Driver,” “Raging Bull” — Mr. Scorsese spent most of the 1980s making farces and fantasies. There was a Michael Jackson video, an episode of “Amazing Stories,” the darkly comic “After Hours” and the star-driven “The Color of Money.”

He eventually returned to grim and gritty realism with “Goodfellas” and “Casino.”

“It is almost as if they believe that [Mr. Scorsese], [Paul] Schrader and [Robert] De Niro invented” these horrors, Annette Wernblad wrote in “Martin Scorsese: A Critical Study of the Films.” “But whether we like it or not, Norman Bates, Travis Bickle and John Hinckley are there, both in the outer world and as a reflection of parts of ourselves.”

Mr. Nolan is no more responsible for the madman in Aurora’s actions than Mr. Scorsese was for Hinckley’s, Kubrick was for the sadists inspired by “A Clockwork Orange.” Let us hope Mr. Nolan realizes this.