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A Few Words About A few words about...™ 2001: a space odyssey -- in 4k UHD Blu-ray (1 Viewer)

jayembee

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Wholeheartedly agreed. The thing that really gets me is how stuck in his literalism Clarke was that he felt the need to ret-con the dates that events from the early books occurred when referring to them in the sequels, because they didn't line up with real-world history anymore. By the time we get to the third and fourth books, the events of "2001" are moved much further ahead. Yet the original book is still called "2001," because that title was too inconic to change.

He should have just embraced that his story took place in a fictional alternate timeline, but that wasn't how his mind worked.

Well, to be fair, while he might've shifted the timeline of events in the sequels, he didn't go back and rewrite 2001 to shift the timeline in that book. So, it can be argued that he did embrace the fact that the sequels split off to take a different path from the original.
 

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I hate this film when I first saw it... I was 8 or 9 years old... after the Dawn of Man I napped... Cooper Cinerama Denver CO. Now? It is one of my favorite films. I've seen 70 MM and the recent remastering all on the largest screens possible. It''s up there with Lawrence of Arabia which i've seen over 50 times, in the theatre... some films continually teach, challenge and inspire
 

sbjork

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I was a 1 year old when 2001 played at the Cooper in St. Louis Park, MN, and my dad got to go see it there, but needless to say, I didn't. He didn't like it, so the experience was wasted on him.

I've never forgiven him for that!
 

ManW_TheUncool

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I was a 1 year old when 2001 played at the Cooper in St. Louis Park, MN, and my dad got to go see it there, but needless to say, I didn't. He didn't like it, so the experience was wasted on him.

I've never forgiven him for that!

Hmmm... wonder if my parents actually ever saw 2001 at all -- they probably usually avoided that sort -- but I wasn't even conceived just yet upon its initial theatrical release... and no, I didn't like it the 1st time I saw it (as a young adult), but then again, I also didn't even care much for Blade Runner either around that same time (while in college) in the late 80's. For me anyway, the size (or rather, visual immersiveness) of the presentation does make a very huge diff for this film though. I gradually warmed more to it each time I've seen it on substantially larger, more immersive presentations over the years, but really, didn't truly love it (and was blown away) until seeing it at the giant IMAX in Manhattan a few years ago via that restoration revival run -- I forget whether it was actually via 70mm film or 4K laser now... as they had just installed their 4K dual laser system (maybe to kick off w/ the 2001 revival run?) alongside the existing 70mm IMAX they had.

_Man_
 

jayembee

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Yeah, over the years, I've seen a number of comments from people who were bored to tears the first time seeing 2001. And it was usually that they saw it panned-&-scanned on TV. When later seeing it on a big screen, they understood what all the praise was about.
 

Josh Steinberg

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2001 at Lincoln Square was shown in 15/70 from Christopher Nolan’s “unrestoration,” filled with negative tears, mottling, visible splices and all sorts of junk a paying audience should never witness. Even in that condition it was still an experience, but a major lost opportunity by not showing the pristine 4K master on their laser projection system. If you scroll back to 2018 posts we talked about it extensively on this forum at that time.

Lincoln Squares laser system was installed in 2016. The first film shown was Fantastic Beasts, in 2D. The first full shown in 3D was Rogue One.

I think the reason for 70mm over digital was that Lincoln was showing Dark Knight for its tenth anniversary in the evenings so they already had the film projector out and the projectionist on duty, and Nolan pushed for film. Nolan’s thinking was that film even in poor condition is better than the best digital, which is not something I agree with after seeing his argument demonstrated in real time like that.

Regardless of the circumstances, I’m always delighted to see the film with an enthusiastic audience and it’s a testament to its power that we’re still talking about it and debating it today.

I think both film and book are towering achievements in their own respects and I could not imagine not having access to both.

Sorry for the multiple edits - perils of posting while three year olds are climbing on you!
 
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JoshZ

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Yeah, over the years, I've seen a number of comments from people who were bored to tears the first time seeing 2001. And it was usually that they saw it panned-&-scanned on TV. When later seeing it on a big screen, they understood what all the praise was about.

My first viewing at 16 was on pan & scan VHS and I still loved it. 🤷‍♂️
 

Josh Steinberg

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I was probably half that age my first time on the original MGM/Fox home video release that used a terrible combination of cropping, squeezing and (in the case of the main title) freeze-framing to get everything into a 4x3 frame, and even in that terrible state, the film astounded me and set off a lifelong passion.

I acquired that same VHS edition years later for nostalgia’s sake and it was interesting to see it like that with adult eyes. It had the look of a BBC news broadcast on location shot on 16mm reversal film, which in its own way made it seem almost documentary-like. I wonder if I subconsciously absorbed that as a kid. It didn’t look like a movie, it looked like the truth.
 

Worth

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2001 at Lincoln Square was shown in 15/70 from Christopher Nolan’s “unrestoration,” filled with negative tears, mottling, visible splices and all sorts of junk a paying audience should never witness. Even in that condition it was still an experience, but a major lost opportunity by not showing the pristine 4K master on their laser projection system.
I'm kind of glad they did that. I wouldn't say that film projection is superior to digital, but it is different, and increasingly rare. There will be many opportunities to see the 4K digital version, but it was probably the last time I'll see 2001 on film.
 

jayembee

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I acquired that same VHS edition years later for nostalgia’s sake and it was interesting to see it like that with adult eyes. It had the look of a BBC news broadcast on location shot on 16mm reversal film, which in its own way made it seem almost documentary-like. I wonder if I subconsciously absorbed that as a kid. It didn’t look like a movie, it looked like the truth.

selvig.jpg
 

Josh Steinberg

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I'm kind of glad they did that. I wouldn't say that film projection is superior to digital, but it is different, and increasingly rare. There will be many opportunities to see the 4K digital version, but it was probably the last time I'll see 2001 on film.

My displeasure comes more from the fetishizing of film damage as something to be worshipped. The studio has better 70mm elements on 2001 than Nolan used - they could have produced a much better print with someone else at the helm.

I actually would not be surprised if 2001 winds up being the last film shown in 70mm. It is probably the most commonly shown film in that format in this era. Multiple venues across the country - including the Castro in San Francisco, the Music Box in Chicago, the Somerville Theatre just outside Boston and the Museum of the Moving Image in New York each own new 70mm prints of the film that they each paid Warner to strike just for their use. (The cost for the print alone is tens of thousands of dollars, so that’s not an investment one makes lightly.) That’s how much of a draw the film in 70mm remains. Each of those venues plays it yearly (pandemic hiccups aside). The more I think about it, the more confident I am that “2001” will probably wind up being the last film I see on film. Theaters and museums will wind up showing it that way long after everything else gets retired.

Incidentally, I find those prints those venues had struck for them - taken from a source different from that used in Nolan’s project - to be superior. It’s taken from an internegative that I believe was struck in the 80s or early 90s that had damaged portions of the original negative replaced with various backups so it has none of the damage seen in Nolan’s version.
 

KPmusmag

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I saw a 70mm print of 2001 at Seattle Cinerama in 2018 or 2019 and it looked fine. No egregious damage that I recall. It was definitely not Nolan's version. It was a joy to see on that screen.
 

sbjork

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I saw the Nolan 70mm print at Willow Creek Theater in Plymouth, MN, and an earlier 70mm print at the Heights Theater in Columbia Heights, MN, in 2002 (I believe). Not sure what that print was derived from, but as memory goes (and I put little faith in that), it was a superior presentation. The screen at the Heights is pretty small for 70mm, but I believe that the print was cleaner, without the negative damage that was in the Nolan print.

They also had their organist play a prelude for about 20 minutes prior to the showing, which was wonderful. The Heights has an organ in the front of the auditorium on a hydraulic riser that they can raise or lower at will.

Frankly, though, unless a nearby theatre with a really, really large screen shows the DCP in 4K, I'm just as happy at this point watching the UHD on my own projector. The stargate sequence is dazzling in HDR, without looking revisionary, and my Vandersteens can blow any theatrical speakers out of the water. Plus, I'm always in the sweet spot!
 

Josh Steinberg

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The 2002 prints were sourced from the same internegative I mentioned earlier.

It’s not an accident that it looks as good as it does. The studio made it in the first place because all of the damage and wear the original negative took - it was carefully sourced from the best parts of the original negative along with replacement sections from the best secondary elements they had. Still holds up well today.
 

Henry Gondorff

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My displeasure comes more from the fetishizing of film damage as something to be worshipped. The studio has better 70mm elements on 2001 than Nolan used - they could have produced a much better print with someone else at the helm.

I actually would not be surprised if 2001 winds up being the last film shown in 70mm. It is probably the most commonly shown film in that format in this era. Multiple venues across the country - including the Castro in San Francisco, the Music Box in Chicago, the Somerville Theatre just outside Boston and the Museum of the Moving Image in New York each own new 70mm prints of the film that they each paid Warner to strike just for their use. (The cost for the print alone is tens of thousands of dollars, so that’s not an investment one makes lightly.) That’s how much of a draw the film in 70mm remains. Each of those venues plays it yearly (pandemic hiccups aside). The more I think about it, the more confident I am that “2001” will probably wind up being the last film I see on film. Theaters and museums will wind up showing it that way long after everything else gets retired.

Incidentally, I find those prints those venues had struck for them - taken from a source different from that used in Nolan’s project - to be superior. It’s taken from an internegative that I believe was struck in the 80s or early 90s that had damaged portions of the original negative replaced with various backups so it has none of the damage seen in Nolan’s version.
Do the theaters that paid to have those prints struck actually own those prints, or is it a life-of-print lease arrangement wherein the theater retains the print but may exhibit it only within their venue and cannot permit its use elsewhere or by others? Also, are these theaters required to engage in a standard booking (flat or percentage) with Warners whenever they run one of these prints to the paying public?
 

Josh Steinberg

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I don’t know the fine print on the arrangement other than that the theaters paid the cost of the print from the lab. I would guess that if they’re paying just lab costs on the print that they’re paying a licensing fee when showing it. I assume the reasoning for getting their own prints is because they each show the movie several times a year, do great business, and that in the long run it allows them a print they can keep in good condition and have that as a selling point.

Before the Nolan-supervised release in 2018, I think Warner had just one or two 70mm prints of 2001 in circulation and they each had their share of damage and wear from years of being sent around the country pretty frequently - it really has to be the most screened 70mm catalog title in the past couple decades. (I’ve heard conflicting reports on the number. Best I can tell, they made two new prints in the U.S. for the year 2001-2002 re-release, and those are the ones that remained in circulation. They were great when they were new but haven’t always been handled well. One has a bright green scratch right through Bowman’s dialogue with HAL about the pod bay doors that it got some years ago and I have seen that exact print in different places getting worse each time. That’s maybe when you know you’ve seen a movie too many times, when you start recognizing damage specific to one print vs another.)
 

Robert Harris

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My displeasure comes more from the fetishizing of film damage as something to be worshipped. The studio has better 70mm elements on 2001 than Nolan used - they could have produced a much better print with someone else at the helm.

I actually would not be surprised if 2001 winds up being the last film shown in 70mm. It is probably the most commonly shown film in that format in this era. Multiple venues across the country - including the Castro in San Francisco, the Music Box in Chicago, the Somerville Theatre just outside Boston and the Museum of the Moving Image in New York each own new 70mm prints of the film that they each paid Warner to strike just for their use. (The cost for the print alone is tens of thousands of dollars, so that’s not an investment one makes lightly.) That’s how much of a draw the film in 70mm remains. Each of those venues plays it yearly (pandemic hiccups aside). The more I think about it, the more confident I am that “2001” will probably wind up being the last film I see on film. Theaters and museums will wind up showing it that way long after everything else gets retired.

Incidentally, I find those prints those venues had struck for them - taken from a source different from that used in Nolan’s project - to be superior. It’s taken from an internegative that I believe was struck in the 80s or early 90s that had damaged portions of the original negative replaced with various backups so it has none of the damage seen in Nolan’s version.
As there are 65mm dupe printing elements on 2001, Lawrence, MFL, Vertigo, Spartacus and (I believe) Sound of Music, these are all available to be destroyed by local projectionists in 70mm.

Per Mr. Nolan’s un-restoration of 2001, WB execs are smart enough to not have offered me a spot directing. One would have hoped that the intelligence factor went both ways.
 

pjones

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Incidentally, I find those prints those venues had struck for them - taken from a source different from that used in Nolan’s project - to be superior. It’s taken from an internegative that I believe was struck in the 80s or early 90s that had damaged portions of the original negative replaced with various backups so it has none of the damage seen in Nolan’s version.
I'm guessing that must have been the source for the 70mm presentation I saw in 1997, in Boston at the Wang Center's much-missed Classic Film Series—in my memory at least, it was more visually pristine than any of the several 70mm showings I've seen at other venues in the years since then, including the 2001/2002 re-release. (Though, speaking of wear and tear, there was a collective gasp of horror when the bulb was prematurely lit while the film was stationary on the leader of the post-intermission reel and we all watched a countdown frame melt on the Wang's big screen.)
 

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