2001: A Space Odyssey

2001: A Space Odyssey ★★★★★

Every time I watch this movie, there's a part of me that wants to be underwhelmed. I never want to believe how monumental a piece of work this thing is, because it stands to reason that there will be few to top it; if this is the pinnacle of the film form, what's the point of trying anything new?

Christopher Nolan, I guess, is the reason. I still haven't seen as much Nolan as I should, but it's still apparent how much this film affected him. Not only him, of course; without this film, there would be no Star Wars, and what kind of a life would that be?

This new IMAX release is an experience everyone should have. It's been a year or so since I saw the previous blu-ray restoration, and while both versions are gorgeous to listen to and to look at, they both have distinct personalities. Seeing this print in IMAX felt like traveling back in time (to the future?) in the best way possible; the sound bottoming out at points, the beautiful grain of the film. I seem to remember the blu-ray being crisp and clean, almost sterile, which isn't to say it wasn't a joy to look at; I'd say it's a great place to start, with the hopes that everyone sees it in a theater (preferably on film) at some point in their lives.

The film is a masterwork, which needs no explaining, but for my own benefit I'll note the amazing use of light and sound (which seems like a given, considering that's basically what film is, but it's worth noting for this film in particular.) The intermission still seems like it's in the wrong place, taking you out at the height of the tension. The practical effects are still some of the best ever done, the sets still hyperrealistic. The thing could fool someone new to film into thinking it was brand new, save for the obvious and glorious 60's aesthetic.

So thankful this film will never be lost.

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