By Gulal Singh
A VISIONARY MASTERPIECE
This 52 year old classic is probably the most bold and impressive piece of art ever made. Stanley Kubrick has always made disturbingly psychotic films but this to me is his best work. This film is a futuristic thriller that remains faithful to science but also at the same time tests your imagination. It is way ahead of its time and that’s what blows my mind, the fact that someone could make such a realistic and scientifically accurate movie about space in 1968!
This film doesn’t only show our future it also shows us our past. Evolution is the main theme for this film. We get to see man evolve, our journey from apes to Homo sapiens. The viewer is taken on an epic journey that for someone today may not feel exhilarating but just think about it for a minute, there are filmmakers today who are trying to make futuristic movies and most of them struggle with the science and they all just tend to make the same thing about aliens and robots. Stanley Kubrick on the other hand made a space based thriller more than 50 years ago, he was able to predict almost exactly the reality we live in today. This really goes to show his creativity, imagination and hard work were on another level when compared to that of a director today.
Now, this film isn’t for everyone. It may seem a little boring and confusing, think of it as Interstellar except it isn’t trying to fool you and make you feel dumb, it’s trying to hypnotize and enlighten your mind. There’s never a moment in this film when you’re not in on the action. The marvelous direction makes the climax of this film eerie and suspenseful, whereas the ending on the other hand may require you to be intuitive. In order to fully appreciate and understand this profound film you might have to watch some YouTube videos that explain the film’s foundation and theme.
Once you have done that everything will seem pretty obvious to you and leave you impressed. One of my favorite characters from this movie is HAL 9000, which is the world’s most intelligent computer. This computer shows you the capabilities of A.I. and the threat it poses towards humans. The voice of the computer is quite hypnotizing and calming which is so contradictory to its real intentions. This film is obviously one of the greatest ever and if you go in with that mindset you might feel disappointed once it’s finished because nowadays every movie about space is loud and action packed, whereas A Space Odyssey is more subtle making it unique and iconic.
I know this film lacks humor and might be a bit long to sit through for some, but that doesn’t affect its dense and impactful story which will leave any viewer’s mind provoked and mesmerized. This film showed the world its inevitable future and proved that if you can imagine it, it is possible.