2001: A Space Odyssey
Based on Arthur C Clarke’s short story ’The Sentinel’, 2001: A Space Odyssey redefined the sci-fi genre. With its radical structure (a single cut elides 4 million years), scant dialogue and oblique narrative this was the first movie to emulate the philosophical seriousness of writers like Clarke and Philip K Dick, and the first to see that special effects could become an integral component in the art-form.
The film’s pacing is deeply unfashionable (except in the art-house) but seen on the big screen it still holds up as a spellbindingly immersive experience. Made at the height of excitement around the space age – just a year before the first Moon landing – the movie combines a typically cold Kubrickian rationalism with a genuine sense of awe, mystery, and (often overlooked), beauty.
2001 came in at #6 in the 2022 Sight & Sound poll of critics and academics, but topped the list voted by film directors.
Sunday’s screening in our PANTHEON series will feature free refreshments and a short introduction by an expert in the field.
Jul 16: Introduced by Steven Malcic, Lecturer, School of Communication, Simon Fraser University
Stanley Kubrick, Arthur C. Clarke
Also in This Series
In the Mood for Love
Wong Kar-wai's most popular film is a love story about two neighbours (Tony Leung and Maggie Cheung) who are drawn together by the long absences of their respective spouses.
In Abbas Kiarostami's self-reflexive non-fiction narrative feature, Sabzian, an illiterate film buff who passed himself off as the Iranian filmmaker Mohsen Makhmalbaf plays himself in reconstructions of his fraud.
Orson Welles's debut was the most sophisticated movie to come out of the Hollywood studio system to that time, and opened up the creative possibilities of the narrative feature film for generations. For nearly 50 years it was "the best ever made".