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2001: A Space Odyssey (1968)

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Humanity finds a mysterious, obviously artificial object buried beneath the Lunar surface and, with the intelligent computer H.A.L. 9000, sets off on a quest.

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Writers:

(screenplay), (screenplay)
Popularity
616 ( 93)
Top Rated Movies #92 | Won 1 Oscar. Another 13 wins & 10 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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...
...
...
...
...
...
...
Douglas Rain ...
HAL 9000 (voice)
Frank Miller ...
...
Astronaut
...
Aries-1B Lunar Shuttle Captain (as Edward Bishop)
...
Astronaut
...
...
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Storyline

"2001" is a story of evolution. Sometime in the distant past, someone or something nudged evolution by placing a monolith on Earth (presumably elsewhere throughout the universe as well). Evolution then enabled humankind to reach the moon's surface, where yet another monolith is found, one that signals the monolith placers that humankind has evolved that far. Now a race begins between computers (HAL) and human (Bowman) to reach the monolith placers. The winner will achieve the next step in evolution, whatever that may be. Written by Larry Cousins

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Let the Awe and Mystery of a Journey Unlike Any Other Begin See more »

Genres:

Adventure | Sci-Fi

Certificate:

G | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

Country:

|

Language:

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Release Date:

12 May 1968 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

How the Solar System Was Won  »

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Box Office

Budget:

$12,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

£69,567 (United Kingdom), 30 November 2014, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$56,954,992

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$190,700,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (theatrical release) | (initial release) | (Canada VHS French Version)

Sound Mix:

(35 mm magnetic prints)| (70 mm prints)| (2001 re-release)

Color:

(Technicolor)| (Metrocolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.20 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film's spaceships were models made from wood, fiberglass, Plexiglas, steel, brass and aluminum. The fine details that forever would change the look of space on the screen were created with heat-forming plastic-cladding, flexible metal foil, wire tubing and thousands of tiny parts taken from hundred of plastic model kits--everything from railroad cars and battleships to airplanes and Gemini spacecraft--bought at a European toy fair. The fine details made it possible for the cameras to get as close to the models as possible with no loss of believability. See more »

Goofs

The quadrupeds shown coexisting peacefully with the apes in the early scenes are tapirs, Tapirus bairdii. They live in tropical forests in Central America and northwest South America. You'd never see them in Africa (outside of a zoo), nor in the very dry habitat shown in the film. But tapirs that are accustomed to humans can be quite docile (though obstinate), and they look exotic to most viewers, so they were a reasonable choice for the film. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Aries-1B stewardess: Here you are, sir, main level please.
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Crazy Credits

The original theatrical release had Ligeti's Atmospheres to a black screen for roughly 8 to 10 minutes before the movie began, and Strauss' The Blue Danube well after the end credits to a black screen. See more »

Connections

Featured in The 100 Greatest Films (2001) See more »

Soundtracks

The Blue Danube
(1866)
("An der schönen, blauen Donau, op. 314 (The Blue Danube)")
Music by Johann Strauss (as Johann Strauss)
Performed by Berliner Philharmoniker (as the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra)
Conductor Herbert von Karajan
Courtesy Deutsche Grammophon
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Tribute to one of the top 5 filmmakers of our time...
7 March 1999 | by See all my reviews

I write this review just after hearing of Stanley Kubrick's death. It's a great loss, and I write about 2001: A SPACE ODYSSEY, because I feel it is the consummate Kubrick film, the one he will be most remembered for. It is a picture like no other, not only revolutionizing science fiction, but changing the way films are conceptualized. It was probably America's first 'art' film and has inspired the likes of George Lucas and countless other writers and directors.

Aside from its visual greatness, the reason the film spawns so much discussion and analysis is because so many people have so many different interpretations of it. Kubrick and Arthur C. Clarke, his co-writer, had a vision, but we have never really found out what was going through their minds. Of course, the skinny on its 'message' is how technology of the future will take over humanity and decide the course of our lives unless we are careful. 2001's ending is one of hope, a version of our rebirth through the star-child's flight back to earth. It is meaningless to many, but discerning filmgoers will understand.

Although 2001 does not have the wicked, dark humor of DR. STRANGELOVE or CLOCKWORK ORANGE, or contain strong, eccentric characters that filled his earlier works like PATHS OF GLORY or SPARTACUS, I still feel he would've liked to be remembered most for this. If anything, HAL will be his most memorable character, dangerous, murderous, and artificial. It was a half-decade in the making at a time when Hollywood was still churning out dull musicals and just waking up to the New Wave of French and Italian cinema. Kubrick was a maverick director who made great films on his own terms, his own time, and for everyone else to marvel at. He will be missed.


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