User Score
8.4

Universal acclaim- based on 357 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 30 out of 357

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  1. Apr 9, 2014
    9
    The grandaddy of sci-fi, an incomparable experience of sense and of mind. Best to approach the revelationary details of the book afterwards, allowing Kubrick's sense of style and majesty to pervade the inner mind.
  2. Apr 6, 2014
    9
    The first time I've seen this movie, I was boored and disappointed, because I had false expectations, but after awhile I understood the idea behind it: This movie tells a story of the development of mankind and shows the beauty and infinity of space. When you watch it, then you must absorb the atmosphere.

    This movie shows Hollywood, that a really good space movie should have an
    experience, which makes you speechless, when you think about it!

    Apart from some scenes, which are a bit too long for me, this movie is wonderful. When it came out, this technology revolutionized the filmmaking!
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  3. Apr 2, 2014
    6
    A well crafted piece of art. Incredibly unusual last act! From "Open the pod bay doors, HAL" unleash the thrills and mystery of an influential, mind blowing adventure unlike any other, from prehistoric ape-ancestry into uncharted realms of space. Personally, I loved the middle, HAL was terrifying and unpredictable villain. Not everyones type of movie. The film ends leaving more questions than answers. Expand
  4. Mar 23, 2014
    9
    Beautiful, deep and mind-blowing, "2001: A Space Odyssey" is definitely a film that needs reconsideration before blind criticism over its plot. The story is not linear and simple, but piled with lots of metaphors and symbols. The use of music is absolutely fantastic. I recommend it to everyone who loves to argue about philosophical topics and to everyone who just really like movies.
  5. Feb 23, 2014
    10
    Outstanding use of everything that has to do with film. Cinematography, scenery, direction, pace, dialectics, score and especially narrative. The most fascinating and thought provoking film I have ever seen. Way past 10/10
  6. Feb 23, 2014
    6
    Stanley Kubrick's "2001: A Space Odyssey" is often claimed to be the greatest and most influential Sci-Fi classic of all-time. Cases have been made for and against it, mainly whether the film is brilliant or boring. Which is it? Is it a brilliant, sacred jewel of cinema, or is it a dull, lifeless bore? In this case, it's not a matter of OR, but rather, a case of AND. "2001: A Space Odyssey" is both brilliant and boing, however not necessarily at the same time.

    Before an examination of both sides, a few points must be made Crystal clear. There are two absolutely essential qualities that must be exhibited to attain enjoyment: A persistent patience, and a clear, conscious open mind. If neither of these two factors are present upon viewing, the film will come off as an instant failure, thus remaining as a frail, distant memory.

    As I conclude this introduction, it must be noted that this movie is not any way, shape, or form a "bad" movie. There are spurts and shines of both brilliance and bore; however, it is up to the viewer to decide where and how these victories and faults outweigh the other. Now, onward to the actual review. Let's take a look at the cons first.

    CONS:

    Pace. Pace. Pace. Paint drying on a wall is faster than the pace that is demonstrated in this film. The momentum is excrutionally painful and abysmally slow, which serves as the prime reason for its downgrades. For those who require a constant, accelerated speed for pace, this would be an ill-suited movie. For those who don't mind a slower progressing, trance inducing plot, this is the quintessential film.

    No emotional connection with any of the characters. At no point throughout the course of the film does the viewer feel any sort of liking, disliking, sympathy, suspicion, or annoyance for any character. They are all bland, with no exceptional quality. Kubrick should've known this, and it's an unfortunate shame that a movie as potentially great as this has this undeniable flaw.

    PROS:

    Excellency of 'Style over Substance': Despite the cons, "2001: A Space Odyssey" is a beautifully and wonderfully constructed movie. It is the pinnacle of movies that was able to escape the grasp of the basic fundamental concept of substance over style. Where it lacks in substance, it makes up for - plus more - in style. The effects? To say these effects were way past its time would be an understatement.

    The Famous Match-Cut: This, in my purest opinion, is the strongest suit for this movie's credentials. If unclear on what a Match-Cut is, Wikipedia defines it as "a cut in film editing between either two different objects, spaces, or compositions in which an object in the two shots graphically match" (this is often done to link a strong parallel between the two objects). Although the effects are seen by the general public as the film's greatest accolade, this Match-Cut can't be denied as the best in cinema history. The appraisal this sequence could receive should be endless, an even that wouldn't be enough. Starting with the opening of "The Dawn of Man" (literally), the segment spirals through the events of a tribe of apes being ruled by another, discovering the use of bones, and overcoming the tribe through the use of those bones. As the leader of the victorious tribe throws the bone in the air, it rotates in a clockwise rotation. Upon its coming down, the scene shifts from the falling bone to a satellite in outer space, 4 million years later. The scene that transpires is one that truly can not be put into words. The segment, along with the music implemented, unquestionably makes this one of the most appraised and memorable segments in all of cinema. Just that 5 minute work of art will make every viewer indulge deeply in thought to realize how far the human race has truly come.

    Cinematography: Time and time again, Stanley Kubrick is able to achieve perfection when it comes to cinematography. Every shot and every angle is executed perfectly without any sort of fault. What else should we expect? There's a reason why he's often labeled as a perfectionist.

    These are the pros and cons of the movie as I saw fit. This movie will not be viewed as awe-inspiring by all, but is definitely a journey that everyone must experience. As stated in the beginning of this review, "2001: A Space Odyssey" will be remembered either as a life-changing endeavor, or a time-wasting, disappointing tease of what could have been. 6.25/10
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  7. Feb 10, 2014
    10
    In my opinion the greatest achievement in film-making, as even today it remains a standout in terms of its cinematography. "2001: A Space Odyssey" embarks you on a journey not only pleasing to the eye but equally stimulating to the mind, engaging it with philosophical questions regarding our existence, evolution and progress towards the future. A pioneer in the sci-fi genre, it remains unique in content and unmatched in visual effects, making it the ultimate masterpiece. Expand
  8. Feb 7, 2014
    1
    I must say I don't get the hype of this movie. I could not even see the whole thing in one sitting because i was having trouble staying awake. I will say though that it looks fantastic the special effects definetly still hold up today and the directing was good. I would say see it for yourself because obviously a lot of people do not agree with me but I'm not sure I could sit through it again. I honestly think now that people just say it's great because they don't want to be the one that says they don't get it. Expand
  9. Jan 25, 2014
    10
    Absolutely astonishing. Fantastic film, despite being over 40 years old, albeit a tad slow. Very few films can stand at the level of sci-fi greatness that this films achieves.
  10. Jan 11, 2014
    4
    I like to think that I'm pretty open minded when it comes to different film genre's but 2001: A Space Odyssey is one of those critically acclaimed films that has just never connected with me. Yes, I understand that there is hiding depth and meaning behind the (especially at the time) beautifully crafted scenes but the slow pace, and running time of over two and a half hours, made it a chore to sit through. I'm all for cinema that does something different but I watch movies to be entertained and in that regard 2001: A Space Odyssey just doesn't work for me. Expand
  11. Jan 6, 2014
    10
    Clássico máximo da ficção científica, um dos filmes mais emblemáticos do cinema.
  12. Dec 7, 2013
    10
    2001 is a visual and audio marvel. The visual effects and the set design were decades ahead of its time, and still look exquisite in the twenty-first century. Many of its techniques were imitated, and a greater number were inspired by it.

    The movie starts around the time humans came into being. Two tribes of apes clash over a pond of water. One is driven away. They discover something
    that perhaps gives them intelligence, which they use to defeat their rivals. The plot jumps into the future where a similar object, which might have been left behind by intelligent beings some four million years earlier, is discovered on the moon. A team is sent to Jupiter to further investigate the matter.

    A number of themes are explored in the movie, the chief among them is our curiosity to find beings who are at the same level of intelligence, if not more, than us. In that pursuit, the humans of this future world have invented a supercomputer to assist in the voyage to the distant planet, but which eventually malfunctions and is prone to consider its logic superior. This is an early example of technological singularity depicted on the big screen.

    The technology of the future world (which we still have not arrived at more than a decade after the year 2001) is dominated in outer space by the Americans and the Russians. The spacecraft carry passengers to and fro from space stations where research is being carried on.

    All this mystery would have created a sense of urgency, but Kubrick downplays it and concentrates on the narrative instead of resorting to cheap tricks. This movie is not about tension and drama. It is quite clear that Kubrick, by deliberately keeping the pacing in check, wants us to have a look around the world he has created and reflect. The images are original but the music is classical, and they blend so well I couldn't help feel engrossed in the narrative.

    In the genre of science fiction, there is no parallel, chiefly because other movies have concerned itself with complex ideas, and though they may have succeeded, can only be watched a limited number of times. But 2001 is such a basic sci-fi flick that it never aged. Even after more than forty years since it came out, 2001 still manages to hold its own against other films in the genre in the departments of visual effects and art direction. By keeping the story simple, Kubrick has ensured that its ideas do not become outdated, and succeeded in bestowing a timeless quality upon the movie.

    He said somewhere along the lines that everyone will take its own meaning from the movie, and has made no attempt to explain the ending. This is the same approach he later applied with another movie of his, The Shining, but which in my opinion suffered because I could not see the coherence in it. But here, by keeping his ambition in check, and showing only what is necessary to the onward flow of the narrative, he has excelled. 2001: A Space Odyssey is my favourite Stanley Kubrick film.
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  13. Dec 2, 2013
    10
    2001 (not to be confused with the year) is a mind-blowing motion picture that blows the stars outer space with it's artistic production
    ..............
  14. Nov 20, 2013
    10
    some people nowadays would say that this movie is really boring and slow,i just say then because this movie is the best film that happens in the space of all time(and i guess it will stay in this post for a long time),it's just a great classic that influencesses this generation.
  15. Nov 18, 2013
    0
    I have no idea which movie you seen, but obviously I did not watch one. What I did watch, however, was a 2 hour long visual escapade of the void.

    Character motivation; never established (or horribly rushed),
    Character development; non-existent,
    Character depth; non-existent (2D personality; not even a shred of emotion, and with some astonishingly stupid characters. And yes, even Hal),

    The plot; never fully established,
    Scene transition (like from ancient times to post-modern times); non-existent, it is being cut so quickly it makes it seem like every single scene shouts "Retcon!"
    Visual effects: The entire focus, this movie is just a mish-mash of visual effects. Just call it a demo-reel and be done with it. This is no movie. The way the effects blend in don't even make any sense.
    The music score: The entire focus as well, but just like the visuals; no effort to connect the music to the scenes was taken. Apparently they just hoped it will work itself out, and they were so proud of the music they even allowed the final track to keep on playing for an extra 3 minutes after the credits had already disappeared just to fully use every single shred of dime they wasted on this film.

    When you have to put all of your energies in order to save a movie, instead of being showered with content by the movie; you obviously put way too much into the medium. Just read a book, people.
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  16. Nov 14, 2013
    7
    Despite its sluggish pace, Kubrick's sci-fi epic "2001: A Spacey Odyssey" is still powerful, thought-provoking, chock full of "how-the-hell-did-they-do-that" shots, and a must-watch.
  17. Oct 25, 2013
    10
    Forgive me for being corny, but the movie is cinematically flawless, it's effects are shocking for 1968. The first authentic sci-fi about the physics of space. Stanley Kubrick imagined and eventually created a masterpiece of cinema, with a very well-thought out HAL character. The idea of a computer being ironic and being able to beg for it's life is brilliant and unfathomable. It is the archetype of the modern science fiction film. Expand
  18. Oct 13, 2013
    10
    My favourite Science-Fiction movie of all time, Stanley Kubrick began making something that would change the face of the movie going experience, and represent a growth in the industry that only comes once in a lifetime

    It's obvious to say nothing looked like this before in 1968, the moon landing was still a year away and no one knew what the earth looked like from up there. That model
    space station circling that painting of the earth is burned into my brain and perfectly transcends beyond the scope of any average Hollywood movie

    The First 20 mins alone is a silent masterpiece, When at a time the world was growing so rapidly, Kubrick rewound time and showed you something so prehistoric that I also don't think there has been anything else quite like it, suddenly you're shot thousands of years into space and it's obvious that this movie really is just an accompany piece to some incredibly large scale music pieces (if that wasn't so obvious from the title sequence). The Monolith is so Arthur C. Clarke, to this day it's identity is still shrouded in mystery, does it grant knowledge or just appear at pivotal events? regardless the mystery has endured the objects charm and legacy.

    Towards the final act, astronaut David Bowman fights for control over the spaceship against the HAL 9000, in a harrowing display of humanity's reliance in computers, symmetrical rooms unnerving silence all eventually builds towards the trippy Jupiter and Beyond sequence, I very much recommended Pink Floyd's "Echoes" for something truly mind blowing.

    Despised on release but later praised by so many critics this film will probably never be fully understood, but whatever the hell it's suppose to be it is something truly mysterious and beautiful much like the idea of space exploration itself, it's so obvious the film is built to accompany a series of classical music pieces than it is storytelling, watching 2001 is proof respect can be brought to the science fiction genre with staggering results, dare I say science eventuality?

    Final Verdict: Beautiful music, Stunning visuals and a story set throughout the years and stars themselves... Only Kubrick could have pulled this off.
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  19. Sep 25, 2013
    10
    Totally took me surprise this movie. It's so different from any movie you've seen. The pacing is slow make no mistake but for me at least it was so interesting.
  20. Sep 18, 2013
    10
    Don't kid yourself. It isn't for everybody. Kubrick wasn't interested in mass appeal by any stretch of the imagination. He wanted to explore the depths of mans technological capacity, which meant highlighting his inherent flaws. In essence, this is a film about error, about questions. And, in the end, it leaves us bewildered.
  21. Aug 16, 2013
    7
    This film expects the viewer to be a philosopher in order to understand the enigmatic allegory Kubrick is trying to convey. Despite the excruciatingly slow pace, parts that feel irrelevant and/or drag on too long, and the extremely pretentious message, 2001: A Space Odyssey remains an avant-garde experience that deserves a watch/interpretation from everyone.
  22. Jul 23, 2013
    6
    First thing first, this is not a movie; this is a piece of art completely focused on realism, logics and detailing of complicated space science of expected future. Additionally some imaginations are also added in the movie to give philosophical and dramatic touch.
    Overall this is a combination of Failure and success and both are so much mixed up with each other that one can’t classify
    them.
    Still elements of success and failure are as under:-

    SUCCESS POINTS
    • Most detailed and realistic picturization of outer space and technology.
    • Realistic acting.
    • No attempt to create any kind of thrill, a completely different approach for a Sci-Fi movie.
    • Beautiful use of Music.

    FAILURES POINTS

    • Lack of connectivity through entire movie between the different phases.
    • Lack of conclusiveness. (Either thrill or conclusiveness, one is must).
    • Poor ending.
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  23. Apr 30, 2013
    0
    When a film "requires" you to always wonder, it has failed. A good movie should be able to stand on its own and not require one to interpret more than the bear meaning of it's content. The more a movie needs to be analyzed apart from its self, the more it becomes a subjective object in the mind of the viewer. Why would I need to watch 2001 and ponder about life and the universe when I can ponder about the subject at anytime, anywhere?

    Write something, or find a new profession.
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  24. Apr 14, 2013
    8
    This truly is the fantastic film everyone says it is... almost. Yes it was ahead of it's time, yes it was groundbreaking in many areas and yes it is memorable. It is the brilliant film people say it is.

    It is not perfect however. It is slow, has little dialogue, and is cryptic. But these gripes of mine are offset my great cinematography and a powerful soundtrack.

    I'm glad to have
    finally seen it and recommend this defining film. Just be aware it is not going to be what you expect as it is unique. Expand
  25. Jan 11, 2013
    10
    I give this film the highest rating, but I am still not sure if I like it. This film is intriguing, visually spectacular, and one of the most ambiguous I have seen. Its lack of dialogue can make a viewer seem disconnected, and some sequences with humans are disturbing in their lack of emotion, but maybe that was a point Kubrick was attempting to make. In the film, humankind is shown to have essentially taken the place, emotionally, of their machines, who seem to be more human than they. Maybe, in conclusion, the philosophy of this film is that man cannot improve himself, but only bestow higher qualities on its creations, which they can never achieve. If this holds true, perhaps those who made the monoliths were conscious of this, and tried to elevate themselves by elevating man. Hard to like, but fantastic nonetheless (if that makes any sense). Expand
  26. Jan 11, 2013
    10
    Its greatness lies in the fact that it raises many questions, but never answers any of them. The best dialogues in the film come in the form of silence - the sheer volumes they speak. 2001 is not meant to be understood. It's meant to be felt.
  27. Jan 2, 2013
    8
    An amazing cinematic experience that engages the viewer with its visuals. Blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah
  28. Nov 9, 2012
    10
    2001 is the best science fiction film ever made, because rather than showing us the typical sound and light show, it instead pulls us into a world of wonder and imagination and aspires our awe.
  29. Nov 8, 2012
    2
    This movie is very slow, and two hours of ships docking, apes and about 4 minutes of the monoliths that the movie is about. If I hadn't read the book first, I wouldn't know what the hell was happening. Read the book, not the movie.
  30. Oct 10, 2012
    9
    2001: A Space Odyssey is an amazing science fiction film with astonishing, timeless effects. The movie manages to be quite terrifying without the use of action sequences or monsters (as is the want of modern sci-fi). Fear and wonder of the unknown makes for quite the potent mix. I love the fact that the ending is so inscrutable. It leaves you startled and uneasy with a total lack of understanding. But that's the way the universe is; totally beyond our understanding. Expand
Metascore
86

Universal acclaim - based on 14 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 11 out of 14
  2. Negative: 1 out of 14
  1. This is the way this ground-breaking monument was meant to be seen: in mind-boggling 70mm.
  2. Its special effects are used so seamlessly as part of an overall artistic strategy that, as critic Annette Michelson has pointed out, they don't even register as such, and thus are almost impossible to trivialize, a feat unmatched in movies.
  3. 100
    Only a few films are transcendent, and work upon our minds and imaginations like music or prayer or a vast belittling landscape...Alone among science-fiction movies, 2001 is not concerned with thrilling us, but with inspiring our awe.