The great movie scenes: Stanley Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey


Written by: Bruce Isaacs, Senior Lecturer in Film Studies, University of Sydney

Still from '2001: A Space Odyssey' (1968)

What makes a film a classic? In this column, film scholar Bruce Isaacs looks at a classic film and analyses its brilliance.

2001: A Space Odyssey was released 50 years ago but it remains as relevant today as it was in 1968.

The film was a collaboration between Stanley Kubrick and Arthur C. Clarke. Both were determined to make a science fiction film that would not date. They succeeded brilliantly. 2001 has not only stood the test of time, but remains one of the greatest films ever made.

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2001: A Space Odyssey (1968)

In this video, we analyse two scenes that highlight the film’s use of cinematic techniques to explore the evolution of human consciousness. The scenes bookend 2001: A Space Odyssey – they are the dawn of man sequence at the beginning and the final sequence, showing the next evolutionary leap in human consciousness.

See also:

The great movie scenes: Hitchcock’s Vertigo

The great movie scenes: Antonioni’s The Passenger

The great movie scenes: Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind

The great movie scenes: Steven Spielberg’s Jaws

The great movie scenes: Hitchcock’s Psycho

The great movie scenes: The Godfather

The Conversation

Bruce Isaacs does not work for, consult, own shares in or receive funding from any company or organisation that would benefit from this article, and has disclosed no relevant affiliations beyond their academic appointment.


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