Film review of at least four pages on 2001: A Space Odyssey
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Course Book: Movies and Meaning: An Introduction to Film, 6th Edition (ISBN: 978-0205211029)
Write a film review of at least four pages on 2001: A Space Odyssey focusing on these four questions:
1) discuss for one page the history of this film and how it has been received since its release in 1968. Compare this history to your own reaction to the film (please cite examples).
2) If each element in a well-made film has a reason for being there (p. 86), then discuss two visual elements (such as colors, shapes, costumes, or other visual “symbols”) that appear to have a consistent meaning throughout the film. What do you think these elements contribute to its meaning as a whole? Please cite your material when consulting the Web.
3) This film is considered the greatest science fiction film ever made by most serious critics. One of the wonders of the film is its use of matte paintings and miniatures — which today is all done in computers (well, for the most part). Please discuss how some of the effects in the film were achieved by the use of matte paintings and miniatures (You don’t have to get too technical). These are real “old school” effects, and they hold up all these years later unbelievably well.
This film also has superior photography and could be used as an example when we get to the Cinematography chapter. A good project might be a couple of other films of Stanley Kubrick — they all have excellent photography (he began as a photographer).
4) Finally, what does the film mean? What are the symbols used to communicate something like an overall “meaning” in the film? How did the production designers (Harry Lange and others) on this film work with the director to achieve the director’s vision? This is one of the more fun films to Google its meaning and then decide for yourself. There are also excellent images on the Web.