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Showing posts tagged: 2001: a space odyssey click to see more stuff tagged with 2001: a space odyssey
Dec 14 2012 12:30pm

What 2001: A Space Odyssey Would Look Like if You Made it Today

What 2001: A Space Odyssey Would Look Like if You Made it Today

From the clever folks at Film School Rejects comes this awesome re-cut of the trailer for Stanley Kubrick’s epic film 2001: A Space Odyssey, which envisions how the movie would have been marketing if it was made today. The real genius of this is that it does serve to remind you why 2001 is so awesome, but also horrify you as how monolithic (pun intended) contemporary film marketing feels sometimes.

[2001: Reloaded below the cut]

Nov 9 2011 10:00am

“I Am Completely Operational, And All My Circuits Are Functioning Perfectly”: 2001: A Space Odyssey

Where Dr. Strangelove may require a squint and tilt of the head to look like science fiction, there is no such problem with Stanley Kubrick’s next picture, 1968’s 2001: A Space Odyssey. Kubrick’s ambition, as he expressed to co-writer Arthur C. Clarke in his introductory letter, was to make “the proverbial good science fiction movie.” That was in 1964, some years before the rehabilitation of genre cinema’s reputation by the critical establishment, a huge element of which was the movie the two gentlemen would end up making. With no exaggeration whatsoever, it is a simple fact that science fiction cinema would not exist in the form it does today without 2001.

[Read more]

Aug 4 2011 5:35pm

Science Fiction and Fantasy Anime: TO: 2001 Nights

If, like me, you first encountered anime in the 1990s then the chances are they were science fiction, fantasy and horror stories that first attracted your attention. In fact for decades that was what the medium was most strongly associated with — from the outside it seemed to be little more than cyborgs, giant robots, psychic teenagers, and city-leveling demons. In truth anime has always, since its first conception, covered a much wider range of topics and genres. Comedies, slice-of-life dramas and romances have always been popular, and over the last few years they have dwarfed everything else around them, with anime otaku seemingly more interested in cute girls and the intricacies of their daily life than any kind of more out of this world topics.

[TO - 2001 Nights...]

Dec 20 2010 1:51pm

What Isn’t In The Recently-Discovered 2001 Footage...

2001: A Space Odyssey now with velociraptors!

It was recently announced that Douglas Trumbull, the special photographic effects supervisor for Stanley Kubrick’s landmark science fiction picture 2001: A Space Odyssey, has in his possession 17 minutes of never-before-seen footage edited out by Kubrick and presumed lost. While this is certainly of interest to cinema lovers and SF fans, the fact that it may herald a new, overpriced, redundant DVD release is mildly troubling; one can only hope that the new old footage isn’t incorporated into the existing movie and made the only available version in perpetuity (in the manner of a certain trilogy about Jedis).

With very few exceptions, such footage is edited out of movies for a very good reason: it’s usually either redundant or not very good. On the other hand, unless the extraneous footage is incorporated into the movie in such a way that you can’t watch the original version, it very rarely ruins the original, beloved classic. But I’m a bad person, so I thought I would try to imagine how the missing 17 minutes could, in fact, destroy 2001. Here are some ideas:

[Read more]

Jul 1 2010 5:07pm

Frequency Rotation: Jermaine Jackson, “Escape From The Planet Of The Ant Men”

Each week, Frequency Rotation probes a different song with a speculative-fiction theme. Genre, musical quality, and overall seriousness may vary.

“Remember Michael Jackson,” the headlines have been screaming over the past couple weeks. The anniversary of the pop icon’s death is upon us, and fan and hater alike had better get used to the exhaustive media tributes (and fresh rounds of reissues, lawsuits, and Jackson family drama) that will be popping up every summer from now until the end of existence.

Personally, I don’t mind. I love spectacle, and I love Michael Jackson—and the two, after all, go hand in hand. His video for “Thriller” fricasseed my tender brain when I was a kid, and his revamping of trashy genre tropes was uncannily in sync with my own warped development at the time. Michael, though, isn’t the only Jackson with geek cred: Behold the secret science-fiction life of Jermaine Jackson.

[Read more...]

Nov 18 2008 5:07pm

Used Futures and the Aesthetics of Star Wars

Prequels be damned, Star Wars is one of the most important landmarks of 20th century science fiction. Not only has it inspired generations of fans (whose enthusiasm knows no bounds), but it has become part of the mainstream consciousness the world over and influenced cinematic, literary, and (evidently) architectural and artistic history.

Artist John Powers has written a fascinating essay called “Star Wars: A New Heap, or, How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Death Star.” Complete with visuals, it explores how the aesthetics of Star Wars was informed by everything from abstract expressionism to modern machinery. He calls the Death Star (and its eventual destruction) “an essential work of minimalism...[and] a turning point for modernism.”

Even if you’re not an art critic, I recommend you page through just for the visual comparisons. They’re striking in and of themselves.

Late 60s NASA aeronautical design, corporate office furniture, and Vietnam-era politics are all woven into the great Star Wars fabric.

Powers also touches on the designs of the other SFnal epic 2001: A Space Odyssey, to which Lucas was indebted (not just artistically or thematically—many members of his team had worked on that film). You’ll never look at the U.N. building the same way again.

He concludes by speculating on the future:

For the first time in fifty-five hundred years of building cities, more of humanity now lives in them than in rural settlements. In the coming years there will be countless master plans for new mega-cities in Africa, Asia, and South America. We can only hope that these plans will be drawn by disciples of Jane Jacobs, students of Robert Morris, admirers of Robert Smithson, and fans of Star Wars.

I hope so, too.