Talk:2001: A Space Odyssey (film)

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References to use[edit]

Please add to the list references that can be used for the film article.
  • Booker, M. Keith (2006). "2001: A Space Odyssey". Alternate Americas: Science Fiction Film and American Culture. Praeger. pp. 75–90. ISBN 0275983951. 
  • Redner, Gregg (2010). "Strauss, Kubrick and Nietzsche: Recurrence and Reactivity in the Dance of Becoming That Is 2001: A Space Odyssey". In Bartkowiak, Mathew J. Sounds of the Future: Essays on Music in Science Fiction Film. McFarland. pp. 177–193. ISBN 0786444800. 
  • Stoehr, Kevin L. (2007). "2001: A Philosophical Odyssey". In Sanders, Steven M. The Philosophy of Science Fiction Film. The Philosophy of Popular Culture. pp. 119–134. ISBN 0813124727. 

CNN photos and new book[edit]

On the CNN website there are some excellent photos showing the making of 2001.[1] They are taken from a new book, The Making of Stanley Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey [2] which is published in August 2015. The article could use this, but without acting as a plug for the book. Possibly the CNN article could be added to the external links.--♦IanMacM♦ (talk to me) 06:35, 13 August 2015 (UTC)


Some possible extra material might be gleaned from this, just trimming the main Kubrick article that's all and don't want to waste anything.♦ Dr. Blofeld 19:13, 17 August 2015 (UTC)

Kubrick spent five years developing his next film, 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968), having been highly impressed with science fiction writer Arthur C. Clarke's novel Childhood's End, about a superior race of alien beings who assist mankind in eliminating their old selves. After meeting Clarke in New York City in April 1964, Kubrick made the suggestion to work on his 1948 short story The Sentinel, about a tetrahedron which is found on the Moon which alerts aliens of mankind.[1][2] That year, Clarke began writing the novel 2001: A Space Odyssey, and the screenplay was written by Kubrick and Clarke in collaboration. The film's theme, the birthing of one intelligence by another, is developed in two parallel intersecting stories on two very different times scales. One depicts transitions between various stages of man, from ape to "star child", as man is reborn into a new existence, each step shepherded by an enigmatic alien intelligence seen only in its artifacts: a series of seemingly indestructible eons-old black monoliths. It also depicts human interaction with our own more directly created and controlled offspring intelligence. In space, the enemy is a supercomputer known as HAL who runs the spaceship, a character which novelist Clancy Sigal described as being "far, far more human, more humorous and conceivably decent than anything else that may emerge from this far-seeing enterprise".[3][a]

Kubrick spent a great deal of time researching the film, paying particular attention to accuracy and detail in what the future may look like. He was granted permission by NASA to observe the spacecraft being used in the Ranger 9 mission for accuracy.[5] He later told journalist Jerome Agel: "I don't like to talk about 2001 much, because it's essentially a nonverbal experience. It attempts to communicate more to the subconscious and to the feelings than it does to the intellect".[6] He further said of the concept of the film in an interview with Rolling Stone: "On the deepest psychological level, the film's plot symbolized the search for God, and finally postulates what is little less than a scientific definition of God. The film revolves around this metaphysical conception, and the realistic hardware and the documentary feelings about everything were necessary in order to undermine your built-in resistance to the poetical concept".[7] Filming commenced on 29 December 1965 with the excavation of the monolith on the moon,[8] and footage was shot in Namib Desert in early 1967, with the ape scenes completed in the summer of that year. The special effects team continued working diligently until the end of the year to complete the film, taking the cost to $10.5 million.[8] 2001: A Space Odyssey was conceived as a Cinerama spectacle and was photographed in Super Panavision 70, giving the viewer a "dazzling mix of imagination and science" through ground-breaking effects, which earned Kubrick his only personal Oscar, an Academy Award for Visual Effects.[8][b] One of the scenes is so striking in film in which the viewer moves through space, with a vibrant mix of lighting, color and patterns, that Louise Sweeney of the Christian Science Monitor called the film the "ultimate trip". Its association with psychedelia further derives from the fact that this label later featured prominently in several posters advertising the film, though Kubrick had repudiated claims that he used LSD himself.[10]

Ape suit from 2001: A Space Odyssey

Upon release in 1968, 2001: A Space Odyssey was not an immediate hit among many critics, who faulted its lack of dialogue, slow pacing, and seemingly impenetrable storyline. [11] The film appeared to defy genre convention, much unlike any science-fiction movie before it,[12] and clearly different from any of Kubrick's earlier films or stories. Charles Champlin of The Los Angeles Times found the ending of the film to be "deliberate obscurantism", while Renata Adler of The New York Times, like a number of others, felt that the intellectual content of the film didn't match its effects. She wrote: "The movie is so completely absorbed in its own problems. Its use of color and space, its fanatical devotion to science-fiction detail, that is somewhere between hypnotic and immensely boring".[13] Kubrick was particularly outraged by a scathing review from Pauline Kael, who called it "the biggest amateur movie of them all", with Kubrick doing "really every dumb thing he ever wanted to do". She concluded that it was a "monumentally unimaginative movie".[14] Despite the initial poor critical response, 2001: A Space Odyssey gradually gained popularity and earned $31 million worldwide by the end of 1972,[8] making it one of the five most successful MGM films at the time along with Gone With the Wind (1939), The Wizard of Oz (1939), Lawrence of Arabia (1962) and Doctor Zhivago (1965).[15] Today it is widely considered to be one of the greatest and most influential films ever made, and is a staple on All Time Top 10 lists.[16][17] Baxter describes the film as "one of the most admired and discussed creations in the history of cinema",[18] and Steven Spielberg has referred to it as "the big bang of his film making generation".[19] For LoBrutto it "positioned Stanley Kubrick as a pure artist ranked among the masters of cinema".[20]


  1. ^ Baxter 1997, p. 205.
  2. ^ Duncan 2003, p. 105.
  3. ^ Baxter 1997, p. 208.
  4. ^ Baxter 1997, p. 214-5.
  5. ^ Duncan 2003, p. 113.
  6. ^ LoBrutto 1999, p. 277.
  7. ^ LoBrutto 1999, p. 313.
  8. ^ a b c d Duncan 2003, p. 117.
  9. ^ Baxter 1997, pp. 224, 235.
  10. ^ Baxter 1997, p. 233.
  11. ^ LoBrutto 1999, p. 314.
  12. ^ Schneider 2012, p. 492.
  13. ^ Baxter 1997, p. 231.
  14. ^ LoBrutto 1999, p. 312.
  15. ^ LoBrutto 1999, p. 316.
  16. ^ British Film Institute. Online at: BFI Critic's Top Ten Poll.
  17. ^ American Film Institute. Online: AFI's 10 Top 10
  18. ^ Baxter 1997, p. 220.
  19. ^ Carr 2002, p. 1.
  20. ^ LoBrutto 1999, p. 320.

"Influence on Science" section[edit]

A new section has been recently added detailing the so-called impact of the film on science. I am concerned that the editor has introduced WP:SYNTHESIS into the article. First of all, the section doesn't actually explain what impact the film had, and in reality just corrects the "killer ape" myth that the film subscribes to. In general I don't really agree with editors issuing "corrections" to the science presented in science-fiction films since they do not purport to faithfully represent scientific theory anyway. This is even more pronounced in this film, since the apes did not become "killer apes" until the alien monolith effectively reprogrammed their DNA, so from the outset this is a highly fictionalised account of human evolution. Secondly, neither source directly cited in the section ([3] and [4]) discuss the film in any detail; in fact, the second source does not mention it at all while the first simply mentions that Dart's "killer ape" theory is present 2001. This does not provide adequate context for claiming the film had any impact on the theory; if the film popularised the theory or legitimised the theory within science then further exposition and better sourcing is required. Betty Logan (talk) 20:37, 13 September 2015 (UTC)

@Betty Logan: FWIW - re your recent edit reversion - Seems there's a substantial amount of material in the complete film documentary, "Dawn of Humanity (2015 PBS film)", that *directly* relates "2001: A Space Odyssey" to the recent discoveries of "Homo naledi" fossils in South Africa - the film documentary can be viewed, as a trailer (00:30), at => - or - as the complete film (113:07), at =>

Copied from ""2001: A Space Odyssey (film)" article - version 13:49, 13 September 2015":

Influence on science

The behavior of apes in the "Dawn of Man" sequence of 2001, largely influenced by the notions of Raymond Dart and dramatist Robert Ardrey, have been "proven false", since such violent apes have now been shown to be "vegetarians" instead, according to archeology expert K. Kris Hirst, reviewing the Dawn of Humanity (2015 PBS film) documentary which describes, directly in the context of 2001, the 2015 studies of fossils of Homo naledi.[1][2]


  1. ^ Hirst, K. Kris (2015). "The Dawn of Humanity - Newly Discovered Homo Naledi Video Review - Accessible Science on the Rising Star Paleolithic Site". Retrieved September 13, 2015. 
  2. ^ Berger, Lee R.; et al. (10 September 2015). "Homo naledi, a new species of the genus Homo from the Dinaledi Chamber, South Africa". eLife 4. doi:10.7554/eLife.09560. Retrieved 10 September 2015. Lay summary. 
Comments by other editors are welcome of course - in any case - hope this helps in some way - Enjoy! :) Drbogdan (talk) 21:13, 13 September 2015 (UTC)
I concur with Betty Logan and I would go further. Perhaps the movie suggests ideas outside itself but to claim something outside of it has "proven false" something inside it is illogical, childish and silly and proves that the people who make the generic argument that anything can prove a fictional movie false are not actually paying attention to the movie and do not understand the nature of fiction.
I provide details: to be consistent, the movie is definitively "proven false" because in or around the year 2001 there was no IAS convention! Oh, and of course no rotating space station was in operation in Earth orbit in or around 2001; humanity did not find a monolith on the moon in or around the year 2001; humanity did not send a ship named Discovery to Jupiter 18 months or so after that non-discovery; Floyd, Smyslov, Squirt, Bowman, Poole, Hunter, Kimball, Kaminsky and HAL have never existed; and so on. It's all a bunch of lies, isn't it? Congratulations: you have proven the movie is a work of fiction. Did you think it was a didactic documentary? I could go through the records at Ellis Island and prove no one named Vito Corleone immigrated from Sicily to the U.S. on a specific date, prove no one named Michael Corleone gave public testimony in front of a subcommittee and so on--"proving" The Godfather movies are false! And yes, prove they are works of fiction. So what? I have just demonstrated the generic argument has wide applicability within discussion of film but only because the argument ignores what fictional movies are. After one gives the generic argument a tiny amount of thought, one should see it is fundamentally childish and silly. But then again my arguments above are SYNTH and OR. I defer to Betty Logan.
The specific Dart idea might be an interesting interpretation today. It was thoroughly discussed when the movie opened in 1968. And it was better discussed then because the writers then generally stated they were aware the movie presented a fiction about the beginning of humanity and were aware the movie and Kubrick were not attempting to get its ideas taught in anthropology courses. Is this not clear to Drbogdan? (See Jerome Agel's The Making of 2001; see many of the newspaper stories of the time on the movie; see many of the books written about the movie.) Do Drbogdan's "Dart" comments belong in that location on the main page? I do not think so. Do they belong on the main page at all? I do not think so. They may well belong on a 2001 interpretation page, Wikipedia's or his own.
Claiming the movie has been "proven wrong" in an idea it supposedly "subscribes to" (a topic for debate) is fundamentally different from claiming one has found a continuity error in the film making.
(And concerning another idea the movie "subscribes to": I understand how Betty Logan might accept the interpretation the monolith more or less reprogrammed their DNA but there are other interpretations too, some of which are far simpler and more powerful. But this is not the place.) ConfusedButNotDazed (talk) 19:10, 14 September 2015 (UTC)

@ConfusedButNotDazed and Betty Logan: Thank you *very much* for your comments - they're *greatly* appreciated - please understand that the quoted comments were not made by me - but by the cited author (ie, archeologist, K. Kris Hirst) instead[1] - afaik atm, media influences the way many in the public may think about "archaic humans" and/or "apes" - true or fiction - such supported text[1] (as well as the "Dawn of Humanity" video (113:07) at => ), regarding "2001: A Space Odyssey (film)", may help clarify possible misconceptions I would think - in any case - Thanks again for your comments - and - Enjoy! :) Drbogdan (talk) 01:05, 16 September 2015 (UTC)


@Drbogdan: I thank you for your response. I amend my remarks--I obviously did not write clearly enough. In my opinion the quoted comment does not belong on the page, even had Kubrick himself made it. It does not matter to me if you are quoting experts (actual or so-called); I do not think their opinions and interpretations belong on the main 2001 page. Nor do yours; nor do mine. As much as possible, and in keeping with Wiki's purpose, I think the main page should present only facts. The page's readers can take it from there. The page is about the movie, not about opinions about the movie. ConfusedButNotDazed (talk) 17:45, 16 September 2015 (UTC)
@ConfusedButNotDazed: Thank you for your reply - yes - *entirely* agree re WP:NOR of course - seems the relevant text (see above) is supported by reliable sources WP:RS (including the PBS film documentary) and seems relevant imo atm to the main article in some appropriate form - after all, sections of "Scientific accuracy" (per "WP:FILMSCI") are incorporated in other film articles, including "The Martian (film)#Scientific accuracy" - in any case - comments by other editors are also welcome of course - Thanks again for your own reply - and - Enjoy! :) Drbogdan (talk) 18:12, 16 September 2015 (UTC)

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