365 films in 2016: film 8 (2001: a space odyssey 1968)

Screen Shot 2016-01-17 at 20.27.492001 is one of the most timeless movies of all time and what I mean by that is you could probably release it tomorrow and most people wouldn’t realise it’s almost 50 years old. It’s weird to think a movie like this would have been considered a blockbuster when it released with how slow the pacing is and how high the concepts are, though I have no doubt in my mind that if 2001 did release now it would without a doubt be a flop, with a budget of 10-12 million in 1968 money and the ending it had it would be labelled pretentious and too slow, in fact when 2001 came out people were saying that Kubrick’s career was over. 2001 is really an interesting piece of cinema, I remember the first time I saw it I was beyond confused, not only was the first 20-30 minutes confusing the last 30 minutes are confusing, I don’t think I really fully understood the ending until a year after I watched it (but that’s okay cause Woody Allen didn’t get it the first time he saw it either so I think i’m in good company). Kubrick makes great thinking films, by that I mean films that after you finish them it still hasn’t hit you that you just watched a masterpiece, it might take you a few hours or days or even months and then it hits you, wow I just witnessed Something great. What’s really crazy about 2001 was how much stuff the film got right about the future, the 60s were a crazy time for overly romantic predictions of the future but Kubrick’s vision of the future is more of a warning about technology than anything else, it’s still a fairly romanticised vision but it’s not exactly the Jetsons. The way Kubrick shows the moon and how people interacted with it a year before we even went to the moon is eerily close too, it makes a lot of sense that a lot of people believe he filmed the moon landing footage a year after, but that’s a whole different topic that I’m not gonna bother getting into right now. Something that’s always blown me away about 2001 was how Kubrick manages to make space, the largest thing you can imagine, feel small and make the viewer feel claustrophobic. I really can’t describe it, it’s something I’ve never experienced with any other film, it has a lot to do with the way Kubrick uses sound I think, the lack of all sound apart from the heavy breathing when people are floating in space is one of my favourite things in this film and I think it really sums up Kubrick as a filmmaker, he’s a perfectionist, he loves perspective and breaking rules that only people who are really paying attention will notice, he loves the small things and the small things along with the giant spectacles are what make 2001 a classic, 2001 a space odyssey is a definite 9/10.

In 2016 i will be watching 365 films (yes, i know there are 366 days this year) and writing about how I felt about them, I decided to do this just because over the last year or so i’ve Sort of pulled away from film and I wanna start to enjoy watching movies again. This will normally be just notes I made or thoughts I have about the film.


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