|Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM) | Release Date: April 2, 1968||CRITIC SCORE DISTRIBUTION|
It is, as promised, "a majestic visual experience," quite unlike any film we have ever seen...These details are merely a means employed by Kubrick and his distinguished screenplay collaborator Arthur C. Clarke, to provoke the more limitless imaginings of the mind, to assault the viewer with tantalizing enigmas to force exploration of that personal universe in relation to time and space, meaning and potential. Read full review
With 2001, Stanley Kubrick proved that a sci-fi movie could be philosophical rather than pulpy, profound rather than pedantic.
Watching this film demands two qualities that are sadly lacking in all but the most mature and sophisticated audiences: patience and a willingness to ponder the meaning of what's transpiring on screen. 2001 is awe inspiring, but it is most definitely not a "thrill ride." It is art, it is a statement, and it is indisputably a cinematic classic. Read full review
Beloved for many different reasons, including its scrupulous scientific accuracy, its vast reach from "The Dawn of Man" to the next stage of human evolution, its unrivaled integration of musical and visual composition, its daring paucity of dialogue and washes of silence, its astonishingly creative psychedelic sequence and its still-gorgeous pre-digital special effects. Read full review
Like Space Odyssey itself, the ambiguous ending is at once appropriate and wrong. It guarantees that the film will arouse controversy, but it leaves doubt that the film makers themselves knew precisely what they were flying at. Still, no film to date has come remotely near Odyssey's depiction of the limitless beauty and terror of outer space. In this 2-hr. 40-min. movie, only 47 minutes are taken up with dialogue. The rest of the time is occupied with demanding, brilliant material for the eye and brain. Thus, though it may fail as drama, the movie succeeds as visual art and becomes another irritating, dazzling achievement of Stanley Kubrick, one of the most erratic and original talents in U.S. cinema. Read full review
It’s a monumentally unimaginative movie: Kubrick, with his $750,000 centrifuge, and in love with gigantic hardware and control panels, is the Belasco of science fiction. The special effects—though straight from the drawing board—are good and big and awesomely, expensively detailed. There’s a little more that’s good in the movie, when Kubrick doesn’t take himself too seriously. [Harper's] Read full review
In the first 30 seconds, this film gets off on the wrong foot and, although there are plenty of clever effects and some amusing spots, it never recovers. Because this is a major effort by an important director, it is major disappointment...What is most shocking is that Kubrick’s sense of narrative is so feeble. Read full review