Actor Malcolm McDowell has hit out at suggestions his violent movies may have inspired high school killers. The A Clockwork Orange star is particularly irked that so many similarities have been drawn between his 1968 cult classic If... and the tragedies at Columbine and Virginia Tech. The allegorical movie charts disillusioned boarding school pupil Mick Travis' (played by MCDowell) violent coup with his classroom pals, culminating in an armed uprising to seize control of the school building. MCDowell says, "Someone said (the shootings were) just like the machine-gunning at the end of If..., but it wasn't. The end of If... was a surrealistic moment. It was there as a poetic statement of release. "If even one of those kids had seen the film there is no way they would have done what they did, not if they understood the philosophy behind it. It was nothing to do with shooting people."