Russell started out directing TV documentaries before making the step up to movies,his first feature film was French Dressing in 1964. His next feature made in 1967 was Billion Dollar Brain with Michael Caine reprising his role as Harry Palmer,a British secret agent.
Trailer for Billion Dollar Brain
His 1969 film Women In Love is the film that confirmed Russell as a director of note and established the Russell style.
The battle of the sexes and relationships among the elite of Britian’s industrial Midlands in the 1920s. Gerald Crich and Rupert Berkin are best friends who fall in love with a pair of sisters Gudrun, a sculptress and Ursula Brangwen, a schoolteacher. Rupert marries Ursula, Gerald begins a love affair with Gudrun, and the foursome embarks upon a Swiss honeymoon. But the relationships take markedly different directions, as Russell explores the nature of commitment and love. Rupert and Ursula learn to give themselves to each other; the more withdrawn Gerald cannot, finally, connect with the demanding and challenging Gudrun
The film based on a D. H. Lawrence novel was nominated for many Oscars with Glenda Jackson taking home the Oscar for best actress in her role as Gudrun Brangwen. Russell was also nominated for best director but he didn’t win.
Its most notorious scene had Oliver Reed and Alan Bates wrestling naked,which at the time was heavily cut before it could be shown in cinemas.