2001: A Space Odyssey


Action / Adventure / Mystery / Sci-Fi


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January 09, 2012 at 11:59 AM


Keir Dullea as Dr. Dave Bowman
Gary Lockwood as Dr. Frank Poole
William Sylvester as Dr. Heywood R. Floyd
Leonard Rossiter as Dr. Andrei Smyslov
853.57 MB
23.976 fps
12hr 0 min
P/S 9 / 238

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by Nessy_Gliana 1 / 10

Don't believe the hype-

I did and I lost two and a half hours of my life that I can never regain again.

I honestly have no idea what the critics and fans see in this movie. And that's not because I can't appreciate "art". I love a good film with profound messages, brilliant cinematography, and great directing.

This film just isn't one of them.

My main complaint about this film is that it's so horribly slow-paced, to the point of boring its audience to death. On the other hand, sequences of dialog go by too quickly and there's not enough exposition to let people who haven't read the book know what's going on (My mother had mercy on me and explained everything before I watched it). Would it have killed them to hire a narrator? At least for the beginning and the end?

Let me break it down for you: (Spoilers throughout)

For the first two minutes you are treated to a black screen with no music, waiting for the actual movie to begin.

For the following minute and a half, you see several pictures of sunrises and savanna landscapes. Like the audience couldn't figure out how to set the scene unless they saw the establishing shot three or four times.

The next eleven minutes are occupied with the grunting monkeys. They fight, see the monolith, fight some more, pommel things with a bone. Supposedly they are prehistoric men whose evolution is being influenced by the monolith's singing. Not that you could tell if you hadn't read the book.

*Finally* we get into space. Only to be subjected to twelve minutes of ships slowly spinning to the Blue Danube Waltz (A pretty quick-tempo-ed waltz as I understand, yet here it feels absolutely agonizing). At last we get some innocuous dialog and rather cryptic exposition about the government not letting people land on the moon. We are left to wonder about this for fourteen more minutes of Blue Danube and spinning ships and neat camera tricks with anti-gravity.

Next comes four minutes of watching a ship travel over the surface of the moon and dock at a space station. We get a little more exposition in a board room scene that follows. Then we're back outside traveling at a snail's pace over the moon. A second monolith is revealed, again filling our ears with that horrible ringing (I had no idea that was an actual piece of music!). The monolith does its little light show and then the plot jumps forward.

*Seven* minutes of watching the ship to Jupiter travel. By this point in time my brains had turned into mush. Could it be moving any slower? Maybe it's "realistic" to portray it as such, but we still don't need to see five or six different shots of the same thing to grasp the concept of its "realism". Let me tell you about this "realism" thing; I cheered when the secondary astronaut character died. Not because I'm a sadist and like watching people die, but because after five minutes I was just so annoyed at the sound of his darn breathing! I'm supposed to care about this character, feel when he dies! Instead I found myself waiting for blissful silence whatever way it came.

Anyway, now we get to the most interesting part of the film-the part with HAL. Forget Dave the stick-of-wood protagonist. The real star of the show is that coldly impersonal, chillingly villainous, ruthlessly merciless bad guy of a computer. He's great. And the "Open the pod bay doors" sequence is wonderful. But it's too short. And it's not long before the director once again lapses into too-long goings on.

Four minutes for HAL to die. And die he does. Slowly, painfully, losing intelligence with every minute, voice getting lower and slower, singing "Daisy, Daisy", all with a low and constant hissing that becomes just as annoying as the heavy breathing.

Seven minutes of flying colors as Dave enters the monolith. Seven. I could FEEL my brains melting and dripping out of my ears! Seven full minutes of absolutely nothing but some guy's whacked out psychedelic version of space travel, again with that thrice-cursed chorus! We got the idea at the beginning of the sequence! Why drag it out so long? Unless he wanted to make LSD users go psychotic and have flashbacks.

I'm not even going to try to explain the ending, mostly because I don't quite get it myself. Supposedly he's in an alien research laboratory and they're teaching him deep and profound things while he watches himself getting older and older and then they send him back to earth as some kind of cosmic celestial space baby. None of this comes across in the film. For all you know, it's just a sequence of images with no purpose or plot whatsoever. A lot of the movie felt that way.

The first time I tried watching this movie I gave up halfway through. The second time I suffered through this sore excuse for a film, it was to help my sister time the sequences to see how long they lasted. It's that boring.

Call this crummy film "art" if you wish. I wouldn't. I've seen more interesting "art" in the local museum. And I am never subjecting myself to this kind of suffering ever again.

Reviewed by Manthorpe 10 / 10

A film of monolithic proportions.

A review I have put off for far too long....

Bluntly, 2001 is one of the best science-fiction films made to date, if not the very best. Stanley Kubrick was a genius of a film maker and this is one of his very best works. And although it is misunderstood by many, and respectively underrated, it is considered one of the best films of all time and I'll have to agree. Back in 1968, no one had done anything like this before, and no one has since. It was a marvel of a special effects breakthrough back then, and seeing how the effects hold up today, it is no wonder as to why. The film still looks marvelous after almost forty years! Take note CGI people. Through the use of large miniatures and realistic lighting, Kubrick created some of the best special effects ever put on celluloid. This aspect alone almost single-handedly created the chilling void of the space atmosphere which is also attributed to the music and realistic sound effects. I can't think of another film where you can't here anything in space, like it is in reality. Not only is the absence of sound effects in space realistic, it is used cleverly as a tool to establish mood, and it works flawlessly.

Aside from the magnificent display of ingenious special effects, there are other factors that play a part in establishing the feel of the film. The music played, all classical, compliment what the eyes are seeing and make you feel the significance of man's journey through his evolution from ape to space traveler.

The story, while seemingly simple, is profound. Sequentially, several mysterious black monoliths are discovered and basically trigger certain events integral to the film. What are they? Where did they come from? What do they do? These are all questions one asks oneself while watching the story develop and is asked to find his own way. While most come away with a general idea of what took place in the story, each individual will have to decide what it means to them. Any way one decides to answer these question results in profound solutions. It's not left entirely up to interpretation, but in some aspects it is. Experience it for more clarification. The end result is quite chilling, no matter your personal solution.

While it is a long film, and sometimes slows down, it has to be in order to accurately portray the journey of man. It's not a subject that would have faired well in a shorter film, faster paced feature. Those with short attention spans need not apply.

Last but not least, is the epitome of a remorseless antagonist, HAL 9000, the computer. Never has a machine held such a chilling screen presence. Which reminds me, for a film with such profound ambition and execution, there is surprisingly little dialogue. Another sign of Kubrick's genius.

All in all, one of the best films made to date and one of the very best science fiction films made. A personal favorite. Everyone must see this film at least once.

Very highly recommended.

Reviewed by Michael Torrice ([email protected]) 10 / 10

Greatest Movie of All Time

Instead of writing a paragraph, I'll give four good reasons why 2001 is the greatest cinema experience of all time:
1) It is a visual Odyssey that could only be told on the big screen. The special effects that won Kubrick his only Oscar are the most stunning effects before that age of Jurassic Park and T2. They allow Kubrick to give an accurate (or at least are the most accurate) depiction of space travel to date. The silence that fills the space scenes not only serves its purpose as accurate science, but also adds to the mood of the film (to be discussed in a later point with HAL). The fact that Kubrick shot the moon scenes before the Apollo landing is a gutsy yet fulfilling move. Many have said that upon its original release, it was a favorite "trip" movie. I can think of no other movie that has such amazing visuals for its time and even of all time (sorry Phantom Menace fans!)
2) Kubrick's directing style is terrific. As in all his films, Kubrick likes to use his camera as means to delve into the psychology of his characters and plots. His camera is not as mobile as other greats, such as Scorsese, but instead sits and watches the narrative unfold. Faces are the key element of a Kubrick film. Like classic movies, such as M and Touch of Evil, Kubrick focuses on the characters' faces to give the audience a psychological view-point. Even he uses extreme close-ups of HAL's glowing red "eye" to show the coldness and determination of the computerizd villain. I could go on, but in summation Kubrick is at the hieght of his style.
3) HAL 9000 is one of the most villainous characters in film history. I whole-heartedly agree with the late Gene Siskle's opinion of HAL 9000. Most of this film takes place in space. Through the use of silence and the darkness of space itself, a mood of isolation is created. Dave and his crewmen are isolated between earth and jupiter, with nowhere to escape. Combine this mood with the cold, calculated actions of HAL 9000 and you have the most fearful villain imaginable. I still, although having see this film several times, feel my chest tighten in a particular scene.
4) The controversial ending of 2001 always turns people away from this film. Instead of trying to give my opinion of the what it means and what my idea of 2001's meaning in general is, I'd like to discuss the fact that the ending serves to leave the movie open-ended. Kubrick has stated that he inteded to make 2001 open for discussion. He left its meaning in the hands of the viewer. By respecting the audience's intelligence, Kubrick allowed his movie to be the beginning, not the end, of a meaningful discussion on man's past, present, and future. The beauty of 2001 is that the ending need not mean anything deep, it can just be a purely plot driven explanation and the entire movie can be viewed as an entertaining journey through space. No other movie, save the great Citizen Kane, leaves itself open to discussion like 2001. It is truly meant to be a surreal journey that involves not only the eye but the mind. Instead of waiting in long lines for the Phantom Menace, rent a widescreen edition of 2001 and enjoy the greatest cinematic experience.

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