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2001: A Space Odyssey: Special Edition (Bilingual) [Blu-ray]

4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
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When Stanley Kubrick recruited Arthur C. Clarke to collaborate on "the proverbial intelligent science fiction film," it's a safe bet neither the maverick auteur nor the great science fiction writer knew they would virtually redefine the parameters of the cinema experience. A daring experiment in unconventional narrative inspired by Clarke's short story "The Sentinel," 2001 is a visual tone poem (barely 40 minutes of dialogue in a 139-minute film) that charts a phenomenal history of human evolution. From the dawn-of-man discovery of crude but deadly tools in the film's opening sequence to the journey of the spaceship Discovery and metaphysical birth of the "star child" at film's end, Kubrick's vision is meticulous and precise. In keeping with the director's underlying theme of dehumanization by technology, the notorious, seemingly omniscient computer HAL 9000 has more warmth and personality than the human astronauts it supposedly is serving. (The director also leaves the meaning of the black, rectangular alien monoliths open for discussion.) This theme, in part, is what makes 2001 a film like no other, though dated now that its postmillennial space exploration has proven optimistic compared to reality. Still, the film is timelessly provocative in its pioneering exploration of inner- and outer-space consciousness. With spectacular, painstakingly authentic special effects that have stood the test of time, Kubrick's film is nothing less than a cinematic milestone--puzzling, provocative, and perfect. --Jeff Shannon

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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The greatest science fiction film of all time Feb. 15 2011
Once upon a time, when the year 2001 seemed aeons away, director Stanley Kubruck (Dr. Strangelove) contacted author Arthur C. Clarke (Childhood's End) to discuss making "the proverbial good science fiction movie". Both were sick of films that passed for science fiction, but were actually monster movies set in space, or were fiction films with the science replaced by fantasy.

The result was 2001: A Space Odyssey, the film, and a companion book of the same name which is actually a completely different animal. The film -- striking, innovative, visually engrossing, ambiguous, and scientifically solid -- is as good today as it was in 1968, even if many of the "predictions" of the film have failed to come to pass. (Perhaps if the shuttle didn't explode in '86, we'd be closer to having moon bases today?)

Separated into four chapters (The Dawn Of Man, TMA-1, Jupiter Mission (and an intermission with music), and finally Jupiter and Beyond the Infinite), 2001 has no dialogue at all for the entire first quarter of the film. Beginning with a blank screen and "Atmospheres" by Ligeti, this is a film paradoxically anchored by both music and silence. The screen changes to the Earth rising over the moon, and the sun rising over the Earth (an important clue and recurring symbol) accompanied by "Thus Spoke Zarathustra". We are then introduced to a tribe of pre-human apes (Australopithecus, perhaps), starving and on the verge of extinction. Other tribes are stronger and out-competing them. There is no dialogue here but the barking of the apes, yet that and the scenery speak volumes. Suddenly one morning, the game has changed: A mysterious black monolith has appeared. The apes are drawn to it, and soon find that they are now able to compete with predators thanks to a new discovery: weapons.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars My God, it's full of stars! Nov. 13 2013
Format:Blu-ray|Verified Purchase
What else can be said about this film? The Blu Ray treatment only makes it more beautiful. Also, the aspect ratio is perfect (I've seen too many versions of 2001 with wrong formatting to make me sick)... A must for every sci-fi connoisseur!
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Consider THIS Review on the Sci-fi Masterpiece... Oct. 26 2012
I watched 2001: A Space Odyssey for a number of reasons:
1. Christopher Nolan, one of my favorite directors, hails it as one of his favorite films.
2. It is considered to be one of the greatest, most influential and beautiful films ever made.
3. I wanted to write a review on the subject.
So anyhow, I watched it. And I was to-ta-lly blown away.
Here are thoughts, criticisms, and notes on the film, 2001: A Space Odyssey:


1. The Opening Scene
The opening of 2001 is, in my opinion, one of the greatest ever filmed. The iconic music (See: The Theme below) plays as the sun rises above a planet, and the words: "2001: A Space Odyssey" show on the screen. Someone on YouTube commented that even if the whole movie was just the opening scene, they could have walked out of the theatre--feeling they had gotten their money's worth.
I totally agree!
Thankfully for us, there is more...much more!

2. The Dawn of Man
This is my favorite scene in the film. Why? It simply has the most action and plot (See: Criticisms below). It revolves around a clan of Australopithecus in Africa, apparently 4,000,000 years ago! The ape-men live a hard life: scrounging for food, defending themselves from leopards, and being driven from their water-hole. I'm not going to spoil the plot for you but allow me to bring your attention to one scene. In my opinion, this is the greatest scene in the film, and one of the greatest, most iconic film scenes of all time!
I speak, of course, of the Tool-and-Bone-Scene (just made that name up)
An ape (Moon Watcher, in the book) approaches a pile of dry bones. Picking one up, he wields it as a tool.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A masterpiece Jan. 19 2014
Format:Blu-ray|Verified Purchase
This is definitely my favourite movie of all time. It is still, after all these years, a pleasure to watch. Not for everyone though, this is not an easy movie to digest. As could be expected, the Blu-Ray transfer is gorgeous, with amazing images with lots of detail. If you never saw this movie in a theatre and only saw it on TV or on a DVD you may be surprised by how good it looks.
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5.0 out of 5 stars 2001: A Space Odessey Oct. 16 2013
Format:Blu-ray|Verified Purchase
This is also a great movie that I could watch again and again. Very well done; acting is outstanding and keeps you glued to the screen.
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5.0 out of 5 stars 2001: A space odyssey March 24 2013
By Mike
Format:Blu-ray|Verified Purchase
The best Sci-Fi movie of all time. Brillant story. A must see movie. Arthur C. Clarke is my favorite sci-fi author.
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great Movie. Great Extras May 29 2009
By F.F
While not a recent movie with all that current technologies (including sound and video effects), this Blu-Ray version places 2001 squarely in the panthion of classic films. Interviews with key members of the team and insight into Kubrick's process provide a lot of information. Definitely for 2001 fans and great introduction for would-be fans. This is a great film and this technology translates it very well.
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Most recent customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars One of my favourite movies
One of my favourite movies and I don't even know why. I sure as heck don't "get" the whole movie, but I know that I can't take my eyes off of it when I watch it. Read more
Published 5 months ago by Ian Deichen
5.0 out of 5 stars Slow and difficult, but ultimately worth the effort
2001: A Space Odyssey (1968)
Science Fiction, 141 minutes
Directed by Stanley Kubrick
Starring Keir Dullea and Gary Lockwood

Stanley Kubrick certainly... Read more
Published on Feb. 29 2012 by Steven Aldersley
5.0 out of 5 stars Epic, awesome, fanstatic movie. But yes, still boring.
One of my favourite movies of all time.

Picture and sound are awesome.

Kinda weak on teh extras... does thi make 20 words for the minimum?
Published on Sept. 14 2011 by C. Anderson
4.0 out of 5 stars I love it but it's not for everyone
2001 is one of those movies that people either love or hate - there's no middle ground here. Watching it so long after its production only adds to the experience - most science... Read more
Published on Jan. 18 2011 by David S
3.0 out of 5 stars Lacklustre Blu-ray edition... (edit)
Okay, I've seen some other discussion of this disc, and while I'm not convinced, I'll withhold some of my nastier views (posted in my original review). Read more
Published on Nov. 8 2009 by fung0
5.0 out of 5 stars Visually Brilliant on Blu-ray
My original theater viewing decades ago did nothing to engage me the way this blu-ray has. It's simply stunning, and given the technical limitations of the day, I don't think... Read more
Published on Feb. 1 2009 by Cheryl
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