2001: Space Odyssey

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if ever there was a definition of cinema it would be this film. It’s weird how you can watch something as a kid and not get it at all. Then when you revisit it later in life it suddenly makes all the sense in the world. I just watched 2001: Space Odyssey again but this time at the Cinerama Dome at the ArcLight in Hollywood. It was magic. Seeing it projected on the curved screen, the quality of film and the big sound. It was as if I was seeing it for the first time. Truly, this is how it is meant to be seen. Began with the overture, even had an intermission. It was spectacular.

Stanley Kubrick. Damn. I never wanted to be a fake fan, of anything, so I generally don’t. But seriously, this film is from a moment (or more) of genius. It is weird when you watch this film, with it’s non-dialogue to story to silence to trippiness and special effects- it all makes sense in the most non-sensical way. There are images and sound and feelings expressed in this film that people just get and connect with.

The sequence at the end…I interpret it as dimension traveling. And it freaks you out because it is stuff you have thought about yourself. At least I have. The thought of bending time and space to make it one continuous loop that you can move through simultaneously. It’s obviously a trip and your brain goes into overdrive to even think at that level. But I love it. I get lost in space thinking quite often and I get existential now and then, this film pretty much sums up the thought process. And it’s not that it makes you feel any better; it just makes it so that you can see it and understand it as it plays out in front of you instead of in your head.

The acting. There is this quiet control in Kubrick’s direction of his actors. I wish I could have seen him direct because there’s something he does that just makes it all the more believable. The characters were great. Dr. Heywood R. Floyd (William Sylvester) has this cool demeanor about him, this quiet intelligence of knowing something that we nor his peers don’t have the pleasure of knowing. Dr. Dave Bowman (Keir Dullea) has to be one the best ever written. By far he gets the best scenes: from a standoff with HAL 9000 (Douglas Rain) to traveling through the psychedelic sequence and facing every moment of his entire life…He was so much fun to watch. Then there’s Dr. Frank Poole (Gary Lockwood) who was just plain cute. I loved his interaction with . When they are sitting together eating their meal and watching their interview. I love how they don’t talk to each other because they don’t have to; they just know each other so well and don’t need to. I like how all the characters don’t ever go above volume and never have a dramatic freakout. And HAL, hands down the favorite. It was very intuitive of Kubrick to write a computer character that would turn on its maker. I feel like it was a type of thinking ahead of its time, or at least the best portrayal of such a concept even to date. I loved the sequence when Bowman dismantles HAL, it was so destructive without having dramatic action. It was all done through sound and visuals. Those are my favorite moments because Kubrick is invoking a feeling through the abstract.

so good. that’s all.

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