A little late... 2001: A Space O.... Questions

Discussion in 'Movies' started by BertFalasco, May 4, 2002.

  1. BertFalasco

    BertFalasco Supporting Actor

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    Sorry but my room has been under reconstruction for about amonth and a half and I finally sat down and watched this film (had some DVDs I got through the course of reconstruction and never watched them, I didn't want to hook everything up all ghetto and ruin the experience).

    All I want to know is what is Stanley's message?

    People die and they reincarnate? What is the enormous black bar? And, the ending, the baby?
    .

    Thanks

    -Bert
     
  2. Jack Briggs

    Jack Briggs Executive Producer

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  3. Luc D

    Luc D Second Unit

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    That's funny, I always thought the film was very pessimistic about humanity, like most of Kubrick's films. I saw Bowman's transformation as a failure, and so humanity is a failure as well, a mere child in the grand scheme of the universe doomed to watch and not participate. But then Jack's interpretation is just as valid. No wonder this is my favorite film.

    Bert, this is a film you'll need to watch repeatedly in order to even begin to fully appreciate. I must have seen it twenty times by now and I still find new things I had never noticed before.
     
  4. Jack Briggs

    Jack Briggs Executive Producer

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    Luc:

    Co-writer Arthur C. Clarke himself said he cried with joy upon first screening the film. He and Mr. Kubrick both are on record that the film is very much an upbeat assessment of humanity's future. It's the style of the director--his alleged "icy coldness," but, in reality, his dispassionate way of telling his story that may seem downbeat. But he is being far, far from downbeat. The consensus is that 2001 is every bit as optimistic as Dr. Strangelove is pessimistic. There's no "interpretation" involved, really. The story posits that not only will humanity survive, but thrive. A good reference book would be Jerome Agel's long-out-of-print The Making of Kubrick's 2001. Another good one is Piers Bizony's 2001: Filming the Future.

    JB
     
  5. BertFalasco

    BertFalasco Supporting Actor

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    Did the people on the moon or wherever they encountered the "alarm clock" Monolith die? Are we supposed to know?
    -Bert
    Thank you most Jack, very in depth. [​IMG]
    P.S.- Was the "alarm clock" Monolith put there for any one species to find it because you said (Jack)
     
  6. Jack Briggs

    Jack Briggs Executive Producer

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    1) No, the scientists and Dr. Floyd did not die. In fact, it was because of the radio signal that the Discovery's mission became so secretive. Remember, it was Dr. Floyd who made the prerecorded briefing about the signal, which Bowman finally hears after disconnecting HAL's higher logic functions.

    2) The lunar Monolith was intended by the aliens to be specifically for us. We were their "project," their "experiment." But would we be a successful experiment? The aliens felt we would be if we were to become advanced enough to achieve space travel. And that is why the second Monolith was buried beneath the lunar surface. The Moon, as logic would suggest, would be our first "target" away from Earth.

    Hope this helps.

    As Luc very correctly notes, more than one screening of this film will be necessary to uncover its many, many riches, nuances, and complexities. This film has perhaps the most complex plot of any major release from a major studio.
     
  7. Joseph Goodman

    Joseph Goodman Stunt Coordinator

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  8. Holadem

    Holadem Lead Actor

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  9. Calvin Cullen

    Calvin Cullen Stunt Coordinator

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  10. andrew markworthy

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    It's perhaps worth elabourating on the Starchild. In the original script, the Starchild finished the movie by blowing up all the nuclear satellite bombs in orbit round the planet. 'What nuclear satellite bombs?' you may well ask. Well, near the start of the movie is one of the most famous jump cuts in cinema, where the bone thrown in the air by the ape suddenly changes to a satellite. Said satellite is supposed to be a bomb.

    The destruction of the bombs was dropped because it was thought to be too reminiscent of the ending of Dr Strangelove (one of Kubrick's earlier films).

    Incidentally, there were also plans to show the aliens at the end of the movie, but this was dropped fairly late in the day.
     
  11. Sam Hatch

    Sam Hatch Stunt Coordinator

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    I agree with Jack's assessment, but the last time I saw 2001 (finally on the big screen, but it didn't look any better than my laserdisc -- yes, yes, I need to get it on DVD still!) I was really struck by the progressing feel of cold inhumanity. I assume this is meant to be part of the process of our evolutional skin shedding, but it still gives me the creeps.
    In the Dawn of Man segments, the humans are seen making physical contact -- babies are held tight to their parents. In the next step, humanity is progressing as a species, but they are no longer close to one another. Floyd is in space, forced to speak with his daughter over a vidphone. Unable to be there for her birthday and hand over a 'bush baby'.
    In the next step, (some) humans are planets apart, and whereas Floyd was still emotionally connected with his daughter despite the physical distance, all such connections seem severed now. Poole's parents are even unable to speak with him in realtime for his birthday, and the psychotic/robotic look on his face freaks the hell out of me. In fact, the last time I saw it I thought 'This guy is one step away from frickin' Jeffrey Dahmer'. Luckily HAL dispatched him before he had time to eat his hibernating crewmates! [​IMG]
    Don't get me wrong, I lurve 2001: A Space Odyssey. I did find that I enjoy it more at home than in the theater. As much heresy as that may sound, I find it to be more of a meditation than a group experience. I think it plays better in the comfort of your own home without other people complaining about the annoying sound effects (or lack thereof).
    Uh oh... I'm disconnecting and becoming distant myself. *shakes fist at sky* Damn you Kubrick!!! [​IMG]
     
  12. Werner_R

    Werner_R Stunt Coordinator

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    When I first saw 2001 I also had a lot of questions, I found this essay on the net wich explains it all, Jack already summed it up but for those who are interested in it:
    http://www.modemac.com/2001/
     
  13. BertFalasco

    BertFalasco Supporting Actor

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    I'm reading the essay, wow. Lot of writing, nice.
    Just a little sub question, is 2010: The Year We Make Contact done by Mr. Kubrick?
    -Bert.. off to watch 13 Days...
     
  14. RobertR

    RobertR Lead Actor

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  15. RobertR

    RobertR Lead Actor

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  16. Michael*K

    Michael*K Screenwriter

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    So was Kubrick ever even mentioned when the role of director was discussed for 2010? I thought 2010 was an enjoyable film, though nowhere near the level of 2001. It also never provoked spirited debate and discussion like its predecessor does.

    Not having read 2010, did it deviate a great deal from the book and what was Arthur C. Clarke's take on it?
     
  17. RobertR

    RobertR Lead Actor

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    It's my understanding that Kubrick did not like to repeat himself with movies. I think he viewed 2001as a complete statement, and nothing more on the subject needed to be said.
     
  18. Luc D

    Luc D Second Unit

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    Jack, I have read the book and I am fully aware of Clarke's intentions (less so with Kubrick's), but like any other work of art 2001 is an open book and this is how I like to look at it. It may not be the most popular interpretation but it's the one that most satisfies me.
     
  19. Jack Briggs

    Jack Briggs Executive Producer

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  20. Jack Briggs

    Jack Briggs Executive Producer

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    Sam posts:

     

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