2001 - A Space OdysseyAFI Rank: #22
Year Released: 1968
Director: Stanley Kubrick
Actors: Keir Dullea, Gary Lockwood, William Sylvester, Daniel Richter, Leonard Rossiter
A slow, intellectual investigation of how thinking and conception affect mankind - from our origins as monkeys to the future space-faring years.
2001 is a melding of two great minds - director Stanley Kubrick and great sci-fi author Arthur C. Clark. Based on Clark's short story "The Sentinel", the pair were not out to make a guns-blazing, alien-slaying movie like the popular Star Trek series. Instead, they were going in a completely different direction - exploring what makes a human a human, and how what we think and do defines us as intelligent creatures.
The result is a very visual, thought provoking movie that earned itself the #22 spot on the AFI top movies of all time listing. If you're an impatient sort, you'll get bored quickly. The movie is over 2 hours long and less than half of that has people speaking, never mind other more strenuous activity. It is a movie about you - the watcher - reacting and thinking about the situations. They don't tell you what to think or how to feel. You see what is going on, and you draw your own impressions, and come up with your own conclusions.
That's a lot to ask of an audience, and how you react to the movie will have a lot to do with your personality. Some people just aren't interested in this sort of slow going thoughtful exercise. And that's fine - there are plenty of action space movies out there. For those who seek something more intricate, grab a glass of wine, a plate of cheese and fruit, and sit back. You're in for a treat.
It's best if you watch this movie once through without reading a lot about the plot or its multiple layers of meaning - that way you can see it with a fresh mind and draw your own reactions and ideas from what you've seen. Undoubtedly you'll have questions about some areas! At that point, search the web and find the MANY discussions about this movie, unravelling the symbolism. See if you agree or disagree with what's being said, then watch it again. This is the type of movie you can watch again, every year, and learn something new from it.
Male vs Female Actors
Very male heavy. I'm trying to remember if there was more than a single female in the movie ...
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AFI Top 100 Film Listing
Male vs Female Actors in the AFI Top 100
The Bechdel Test in the AFI Top 100