50 years ago on April 2, 1968, Stanley Kubrick brought an experience in the movie’s “2001: A Space Odyssey.” I can say that this is one of the science-fiction films that changed all the other sci-fi movies in the modern era. In fact, this is a masterpiece that hit the movies nowadays. Especially in that year, films like this are very hard to understand. Stanley Kubrick who, as we know, has a special technique in all of his films. The cinematographic techniques he uses-seem to bring new things. He combines everything in the form of interpretation and shot so that a question will raise of what really happened. But, “2001: A Space Odyssey” makes us wonder from the beginning of the movie until the end.
Back in that year, there were 250 people who walked out during the first screening of this movie including Rock Hudson who said,
“Will, someone tells me what the hell this is about?”
and Arthur C. Clarke, author of “2001,”
“If you understand ‘2001‘ completely, we failed. We wanted to raise far more questions than we answered.”
The answer proved after 50 years passed, a lot of fan theory, analysis, criticism, and reviews spread across the internet. Answer all of the questions that pop up in this movie has a lot of interpretation of each viewer.
I remember when watching this movie for the first time just because I make this as a reference. Watching this movie is so difficult to sit through for 2 hours and 30 minutes because the pace of this movie is so slow and boring. So, I watched this movie dropped for days and after watching this movie I didn’t know what expression I was describing after seeing the last scene about reincarnation being a baby. I started reading the original novel and it’s good but it didn’t feel like I watch the movie. Reading some trivia about this movie even I’m also surprised this movie is still being discussed until now. So, I’m watching this movie without anyone blocking it in one sitting and I admit it’s a masterpiece. When I show the movie to my college friends, I can guess that they certainly will not like it and it fits my belief but there is one of my friends who really understand about how this film works. He also has a different interpretation with me while we share opinions. I’ve reviewed and interpreted this film in various ways that appear in my head. But, actually, not only that because there are various ways how to interpret this film.
The film opens with the dawn of the human according to Charles Darwin’s theory which is approximately 10 minutes and there is no dialogue at all. From here, some various ways that how we should be able to interpret this scene. This scene describes the theory of human evolution as a faction with one another who seize power, fight, try some kind of tools such as bones, shelter, and meet with the monolith. One of the most remembered aspects of this scene is the jump cuts of the bone that thrown up in the air and a jump cut in outer space depicting spaceships. Thus, there is a relationship of relevance that still concerns the theory of Charles Darwin where the apes are described as the ancestors of human characters that reside in the spaceships. The next scene is a monolith that’s used as a place to take pictures, I think, and isolated in a planet. I also think that Stanley Kubrick wants to show something that is still happening around us. How do we always see something unique without being dug at first without knowledge, they always make it an “I want to take this moment.” What I want to talk about is a selfie that is improbable to pass this kind of thing that humans did. So, this illustrates how humans have been suppressed by technology even ignoring their own threats. It’s about a humanity that has fallen by inanimate objects until humans become more advanced, we will always be fixated on technology.
This is also an evidenced in the next scene where we will be introduced to one of the most frightening antagonists in the history of movies, HAL 9000, the smartest Artificial Intelligence in this movie. HAL 9000 is described as how technology has studied the human mind and even executed it. Just like “Terminator” that better describes and animates its interpretation. HAL 9000 is like an object that has its own feelings. He just wants to participate in a group in which he himself is exposed by the group itself. From this, it’s more like a philosophy or law of nature in which bad people are born from good people and good people who think bad people will always bad. In fact, good people who gave birth to the seeds of bad people who were originally good people. Just like Starset song’s “My Demons” were one of the lyrics said,
“They think I’m crazy but they do not know the feeling.”
After the scene that explains an AI, we will be faced with the most absurd scene and most recognized is the Stargate scene. In this scene too, gestures and gimmicks are most demanded and there is no dialogue. This scenario further illustrates how the process of human evolution, after the Stargate scene. It’s about meeting against monolith or I think of it as a god. It’s about how we are processed in front of God as well as seeing ourselves getting older and become the reincarnation of a baby that floating out of the sky. This scene is also more like a life after death. We don’t know what happens after we die, nobody knows what’s going on next, and nobody knows where we’re going. One that opens as well as the essence of the answer to everything from this film, the monolith. I talk a lot of details about this in my review.
“2001: A Space Odyssey” is actually not one of those films that can only be taken for conceded. There are many interpretations of it even considering that so convoluted and not just one. The film succeeded in changing the mindset of how a movie would sculpture. If I look at movies nowadays, I don’t know why it’s not like this or any of Stanley Kubrick’s movies. I can take an example of “Avengers: Infinity War” which is now is booming. But, there is no interpretation, no messages, and philosophies are there. Films nowadays just keep poking the mood of their audience. For Stanley Kubrick, he didn’t pay much attention to it. He is more to himself and makes something he just wants that he likes it. Not a movie that is only made for the sake of money even the quality are good that’s bad. However, one question that still continues to be tarnished until now is, what does it all mean? Is this film purposely made like this so that few people accept it or a film that has values carried even difficult to interpret?
As Arthur C. Clarke says to Rock Hudson,
“We wanted to raise far more questions than we answered.“
and the proofs are still hard to answer today. “2001: A Space Odyssey” is not entirely like other sci-fi movies such as “Gravity” and even “Interstellar.” Christopher Nolan also admitted that he really liked the influence of this film and suggested to remastered it again. The film discusses entirely on the theory of evolution where there is a connection between the past and the future. It’s about what the world looks like and the people gradually depend on technology. “2001: A Space Odyssey” brings a different viewing experience to sci-fi movies in general. You will be prepared a various suspense, the cinematography that’s so slick, and visual effects that I recognize it hard that how he can make such like this. Stanley Kubrick wants to convey an important message to what will happen in the next few years or even in the next century. Therefore, we celebrate 50 years of this film. It will never die forever and never.