Makes me want to fly into space right now.
While investigating the appearance of mysterious monoliths throughout the universe, astronauts David (Keir Dullea) and Frank (Gary Lockwood) battle their ship’s intelligent computer, HAL-9000.
Questions about space are never answered. Many people sit and wonder about the actual mysteries of space, and what is really out there. I can count myself as one of those people, but thinking about a new life out there? That is what mostly brings up my curiosity.
The one thing about 2001 is that this film, like many of Stanley Kubrick‘s others, confuse the hell out of people. And this film, is really no different. Kubrick films this project with great style. The way he uses almost no dialogue, and replaces it with either, orchestra music, or just the sound of silence or breathing, he is adding a lot more to the mystery of space. He is trying to take us away from the story and more towards the idea of humanity, and where we came from, and what is out there.
However, a lot his style may turn off a lot of viewers. At times, I did find myself a little challenged by everything that was going on, because it is so different. Literally, the first three minutes are just pitch black, with a creepy-ass score, and that’s when I knew I was in for a big-ass ride. People will not just be taken back from the minimal dialogue, but also the extraneous amount of symbolic images, that people have no idea what they mean. The film is open to viewer’s, and for me I understood most of the symbolism, however, some people will find a lot of this, totally out of their comfort zone, because I questioned it too, if whether or not I knew exactly what was going on. But, it’s just the fact that Kubrick keeps this film together with a script that brings out so many questions, and ideas that we, as a society, have never thought about. Where did the first murder occur? How did it occur? When will technology take over the world to a point of where it is practically turning against us? How far will it go, till the point of the end of humanity? All these questions are brought up, and although some are answered, and some are not, we all know one thing that as humans, we may never know, until it actually happens. Its not just about the one human, but just as the human species in general.
I was totally blown away by those special effects. Kubrick uses a lot of hand-crafted puppet materials, that we’re later used in a very similar movie, but you didn’t hear it from me. It still astonishes me that this film was made back in 1968, where images like this were unheard of, and Kubrick got every single image, and effect right, whereas many films, that spend almost $1,000,000 on CGI-special effects, and can’t get it close to even looking right. The images of space, and the numerous space crafts that inhabit, are just beautiful. Mixed with the sound it really does give you sense of isolation, and adds to the overall effect that the film was going for. By the end, Kubrick uses certain colors, that just totally boggle your mind, and actually make you think what drugs you took, however, all of it adds to the overall effect of a place, farther than where our imagination can stretch.
The acting here is highly sub-par but that’s because there’s barely any dialogue, that can show off these actors talents. I have to give it the most to Douglas Rain, who does the voice of that evil-ass red-dot computer, HAL-9000. The best thing about HAL 9000 is that it is one of the first “robots” to be used as a harmful thing in a film. We always see how robots help us out through almost every time, but we never see how, and what happens when this piece of technology turns on us. Rain does a great job of voicing HAL because, he doesn’t show too many emotions, and just sticks with one tone of voice the whole movie. The last couple of scenes with HAL, are just heart-wrenching and will have you totally feeling upset over a robot. This adds a lot more over the idea of technology over humanity.
Consensus: Though some viewers may find themselves catching some z’s, others will be astonished. 2001: A Space Odyssey is one of the most influential sci-fi films of all-time that brings up great questions about humanity, and space, but has an incredible direction from Kubrick, that holds a lot of symbolism, and great visuals, of outer space. It has to be seen to believed.