Thursday, 23 October 2014

Film Review: "Stanley Kubrick" 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968)

Figure 1: Movie poster: 2001: A Space Odyssey

"Stanley Kubricks" Space Odyssey is a very unique film in the sense that the narrative story is not told that much through the dialogue of the character but the actions of them. The film its self is beautiful and has some simply spectacular panoramic shots  of the incredibly deserted land were the monkeys are starting to evolve to the elegant scenes of the space ship docking to the mother ship. This is definitely not an "easy watcher" and needs allot of patients to stick with it. The film is about an a strange object that is discovered by humans. This object gives information to astronauts Dave Bowman (Keir Dullea), Frank Spoole (Gary Lockwood) to head towards Jupiter. 

Figure 2: scene were the ape discovers the bone

Alot of this film is to do with suspense which is highly different to what we are used to with today's modern blockbusters. "Stanley Kubrick" would make certain significant shots very overly dramatic by shooting them in slow motion and giving the viewer the feeling that the scenes have been elongated, he also makes these scenes allot more intense with the use of very atmospheric orchestral music. Tom Milne who is a journalist for the guardian also agrees with my points describing the iconic scene of the ape discovering the bone "It turns in lazy slow motion against the sky" (Tom Milne, The Guardian, 2010).

Figure 3: Astronauts on the moon  

You have to be incredibly patient with "2001: A Space Odyssey" as the film is all about tension and build up. If a viewer of today's modern society was to watch this film without being warned that you have to be in the right mind frame for it they wouldn't understand why this film is famous and why it is such a key role in the sci-fi genre. In today's films when a scene becomes tense you are automatic used to something big happening to follow it but what "Stanley Kubrick" does is leave you with what some might say an anti climax as nothing has instantly happened after the tense music and build up leaving you waiting and waiting scene after scene until the big finally. In "Roger Ebert" "review he states "This is the work of an artist so sumblimely confident that he doesn't include a single shot simply to keep our attention." (R. Ebert, 1997). 

Figure 4: The final scene of the film

"Stanley Kubrick" could have been heavily influenced in the era in which this film is filmed as it is incredibly psychedelic and trippy. There are multiple scenes in which this film could be classed as trippy from the feeling of being immersed into the vastness of space to the highly hallucinogenic were there is nothing but lights flashing and running towards the scene and the fact that the film ends with a baby in a pod looking at the Earth. "Jonahh Oestreich" even states evidence in his review that the "people coming to the shows at last but those people were somewhat different - a young crowd, smoking pot before the screenings" (J Oestreich, 2013). Summing up this film is incredibly hard as you cant just treat this as a normal thing as it is something much bigger and should be viewed as piece of pop culture which will forever be iconic and remembered.

Illustration List 

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T. Milne, the guardian (2010):

R. Ebert (1997):

J. Oestreich (2013) :

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