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118 of 125 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "I must say, you guys have certainly come up with something..."
It was with a certain trepidation that I put this, my first blu-ray disk, into my new Panasonic blu-ray player. "2001: a space odyssey" has been my favourite film for as long as I can remember, and I've owned copies on a variety of VHS tapes and DVDs.

The theme is just about as epic as it's possible to imagine: the evolution of man from ape through human to a...
Published on 15 Aug 2008 by Kenneth F. Mcara

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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing
I love 2001 A Space Odyssey. It's a lifetime faveourite. However as a Blue Ray film, the quality is scandalously bad. Note: this isn't a reflection on the seller in any way who plainly isn't responsible for what the studio released here! This is a criticism of the Blue Ray release. There is dirt and dust and scratches in evidence everywhere. This must have been mastered...
Published 22 months ago by Rocket Man


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118 of 125 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "I must say, you guys have certainly come up with something...", 15 Aug 2008
By 
Kenneth F. Mcara "Kenneth F. McAra" (Dundee, Scotland) - See all my reviews
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It was with a certain trepidation that I put this, my first blu-ray disk, into my new Panasonic blu-ray player. "2001: a space odyssey" has been my favourite film for as long as I can remember, and I've owned copies on a variety of VHS tapes and DVDs.

The theme is just about as epic as it's possible to imagine: the evolution of man from ape through human to a completely new life form. It's a film which has sharply polarised views, with some people completely mystified or even bored by the presentation, whilst others are spellbound and deeply moved. Unsurprisingly, I am in the second category, and still find myself surprised that Kubrick managed to get a major motion picture company to finance such a bold and imaginative film.

The presentation on blu-ray is beyond my wildest dreams. I take the point of a previous viewer about the visible joins in the front-projection screens, which could no doubt have been digitally removed, but other than that the film is in appropriately pristine condition. I sat down to watch for a few minutes - just to check that the new blu-ray player was working - and found myself watching the whole way through to the end.

The special effects were always a highlight of the film, and they do not disappoint in this new transfer. My particular favourite comes at the end of the first section of The Blue Danube where the camera appears to sail straight through between the 'wheels' of the space station - absolutely marvellous!

This film easily holds its place amongst other great cinema masterworks; watch this blu-ray version and find out exactly why.
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40 of 42 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An audacious masterpiece - and damn these critics...!, 11 July 2011
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P. A. Clarke (Oundle, England) - See all my reviews
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God, how this film's detractors depress me!

All this talk of boredom - and criticism of its special effects. My God, my God, my God............. How depressing that people can't cope with a slower pace, an unfolding story that you need to absorb visually (this is CINEMA), not just be spoonfed with an explicit, this-is-what's-happening-so-this-is-what-we-gotta-do... script, fast-cut visuals, and bloody CGI....

To throw age at this film as a reason for finding it wanting is dismally stupid. Countless "older" films ('68 isn't that old, actually), are brilliant - and influenced what came after - including all those films that some of these detractors probably think are better. And this is undoubtedly a brilliant film. 2001 is a CINEMATIC experience (like Lawrence of Arabia, and many others). Seeing them at home on a domestic screen can never be the same as that shared monster screen, wraparound sound, cinema experience, with it unfolding before you, and no-one to shatter the spell, with requests to walk the dog, or make a cup of tea....

The pace is slow, but inexorable: Hal's messages of antenna malfunctions, the space-walks, the realisation (by us - not the astronauts), that Hal is lip-reading their discussion of his failings, then the scenes when Hal prevents re-entry ("Open the pod doors, Hal!") are absolutely brilliant. And the later "star-gate" and the aging/dying/rebirth conclusion is a mind-blower.

A work of audacious genius. Those who don't get it are (in my unapologetic view) the lesser for it - but I acknowledge that their experience is not helped seeing this epic reduced to a small disc slipped casually into a small player (or even, God forbid, a 17" laptop). 2001 is cinema at its grandest. A DVD really isn't...
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85 of 94 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb film, good transfer, poor extras ..., 20 Mar 2008
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P. White (Cambridge, United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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As has been reported this disc does have an FBI warning at the beginning but is otherwise a UK release. The packaging is for the UK. I love this film, have done for 35 years so I won't comment on the movie itself except to say that 95% of the visuals could have been made yesterday and that the story is fiercely intelligent. And so to the Blu-Ray disc:
The transfer is good. There are very few anomalies (and I don't mean Tycho Magnetic Anomalies), most of the anomalies that are present were built in, eg dirt on the rear projection screen in the Dawn of Man sequence. That brings me to my only real irritation with the film. If Stanley Kubrick was such a perfectionist (and he was) then why oh why did he allow the set designers to use a godawful backcloth screen to simulate the African terrain and sky? It's SO blaringly obvious that it's artificial because the viewer can see creases and imperfection in the fabric. It ruins the whole sequence. It was bad enough on DVD but with the extra resolution of Blu-ray it's just annoying. It's the one things that I wish someone would digitally correct.
After that all is well. Yes they got the Earth from space wrong (too washed out) but the SFX are stunningly good and look marvellous in HD. It amused me to read IBM-Tele-Pad on the Discovery crew's flat screen TV pads (whilst they're eating). There's a multitude of fine detail revealed: the ancillary rooms inside the lunar shuttle docking area reveal figures and screens that I'd not noticed before. The Star-Gate sequence looks a LOT better now. The finer detail and improved colour range of HD really adds some wow factor to it. I'm still not convinced by the colour filtered landscapes though: they could have tried harder there.
The audio is good. The soundtrack is good as it can be for a 40 year old film and despite being a little 'thin' is well within modern standards.
Frame judder is a slight problem as reported by another reviewer but I'm wondering whether that was a limitation of the original effects rather than the transfer to Blu-Ray because the same scenes in SD in the extras reveal the same judder.
The extras are many but none good. There's a very iffy Channel-4 documentary with some annoying talking heads discussing the film and various other small documentaries. None make the heart race. The best is a promotional film made for 'Look' Magazine in 1966 that was designed to interest potential advertisers in buying into a 'special' Space related supplement due to be published first quarter 68 on the back of the 2001 release. It shows some really interesting scenes of production, Kubrick on set etc and Clarke in the Grumman factory inspecting Lunar Modules.
There's something weird about this release. Amazon had a release date that has been a gone with no stock. The other Kubrick related releases appeared on time but not this one leading me to think there's been a production problem. It is possible to obtain a copy elsewhere and if you like 2001 it's worth doing so.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 45 Years On, Still Remarkably Original, 19 Dec 2013
By 
Keith M - See all my reviews
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On re-watching Stanley Kubrick's 1968 (pre-Apollo moon landing) futuristic masterpiece, one of the first questions it raised in my mind was what the current crop of (post-Star Wars) science-fiction film fans would make of it. I mean, what the hell is going on? A blank screen with classical music, a load of apes messing about and virtually no dialogue for 30 minutes! Of course, it is the film's very unconventionality (even by today's standards) and, (if you like) deeper spiritual significance, that sets it apart from subsequent 'run-of-the-mill' science-fiction adventure yarns. Even its (obviously) dated space-station sets ('futuristic' chairs, white walls, zero-gravity environment), for me at least, have a fond, nostalgic appeal to them - rather like that of the original Star Trek (which hit our small screens - remarkably - two years before Kubrick's film had people queuing round the block).

OK, on a simplistic level, at the centre of Kubrick's film (which was co-written with Arthur C Clarke and based on the latter's short story, The Sentinel) is (perhaps) the well-worn premise of aliens influencing the pattern of events in our solar system (earth, the moon , Jupiter) - via the communication device(?) of a black rectangular 4 million year old 'monolith'. But then again, the film can also be read as something much more philosophical, tracing the history and potential destiny of humanity itself, as well as touching on themes of technology and artificial intelligence (Kubrick was always notably reticent in helping to resolve any of the film's ambiguities).

For me, the effect of 2001 comes as close to 'mind-blowing' as anything in cinema (largely as a result of Geoffrey Unsworth's cinematography and Kubrick's special effects design). And, OK, it's not exactly narrative dynamite throughout (part 2 notably drags slightly), but it still retains a great deal of innovation (both visually and conceptually), particularly in respect of part 1 (the apes) and part 4 (the 'cosmic regression' - whose high velocity sequence always reminds me of Dr Strangelove's B-52 traversing the polar ice, though apparently was shot in a combination of Scotland and Monument Valley). Then 'Dave' Bowman's (Keir Dullea, in probably the only notable - and it is brilliant - acting turn in the film) confrontation with the HAL 9000 computer (and the wonderful, dulcet tones of Douglas Rain) during part 3 provides the dramatic heart of Kubrick's film - for me, one of the great passages in cinema.

The other thing re-watching the film prompted for me, was a 'spot reassessment' of Kubrick as a film-maker. The man was, of course, one of the true geniuses of modern cinema - charting his way through the whole gamut of genres (not to mention controversies) - heist, sexual awakening, 'war crimes', nuclear holocaust, historical epic, dystopian treatise, costume drama, psychological horror, Vietnam - and hardly ever putting a foot wrong (well, OK there was Eyes Wide Shut, I guess). Not only that, but the man (in the main) eschewed Hollywood, and rarely cast megastars in his films. 2001 remains a great testament to the man's creative powers.
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19 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An absolute work of art- 2001 works on any level you want it to, 7 Nov 2006
Has there ever been a film that has divided people so much as 2001? Some believe it to be the most important artistic achievement in history, and see it as an essential study of evolution, man's complex relationship with technology, and what the future holds for us. Some like it just for its stunning visuals and mind-bending ending. Others see it as a just a complete bore, and an excersise in pretension.

Truth is, 2001 is justifiably all of the above, and different people take away different things from a viewing of Kubrick's masterpiece. Firstly, there are the things we can't debate. On DVD, this film looks, and sounds INCREDIBLE. If you only have it on VHS, I must insist that you upgrade. Even in today's world of CGI, visually, 2001 has never been surpassed.

The film itself (adapted from Arthur. C. Clarke's novel) concerns a series of mysterious artefacts stumbled upon by mankind through the ages. It opens with man's prehistoric beginnings,and then skips forward to expeditions in space. There, men on a mission to Jupiter fight for their lives against rogue control computer H.A.L.

BUT, the plot of this film is not key to its magic. 2001's genius is its asking questions of its audience. It looks at evolution (Why do we evolve?) It looks at technology and creation; at which point does it become more (is H.A.L just a machine?). But most importantly it hints at the question of what the future holds for mankind.

If you've never seen this film before, that must all seem really heavy. But the beauty of 2001 is that it is all put together with a cinematic magic (of which only Stanley Kubrick was capable) that anyone will love. Seriously, even those who don't understand what's going on will be hyptnotised by the Haunting introduction (completley black), the Blue Danube Waltz section (an original score was rejected), or THAT ending.

To sum up, whether you are a 6-year old kid (you'll love the spaceships), a clueless film virgin, or a member of mensa, sit back, and take in as much or as little as you like.
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24 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Master Piece. Period., 7 April 2008
By 
Kevin Long "kevin_cambs_uk" (England) - See all my reviews
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What can I say, the picture on this Blu Ray of Kubricks master piece is simply stunning. Having watched this film, more times than I can remember, from the old Phillips Video 2000 system in black and white, to video, to DVD to upscaled DVD, and now finally on Blu Ray, I can honestly say that the presentation is simply stunning.

I am watching on a Sony Bravia 46inch X range TV, and playing via my PS3. Watching the film again, shows all the intricate detail of the ships in the film, the opening pan of Discovery on the Jupiter Mission is awesome, the level of detail on the ship is brilliant, but inside the ship, you see things you never witnessed before.

You can read the badges on the suits, the instrumentaion panels. There are also loads of extras on the disc which I have yet to get too.

Sound wise again, this does not let the presentation down.

Overall I am pleased with the film, its a pleasure to watch it again, but to actually 'see' more of it is a real treat, I think even Kubrick would have been impressed !

Enjoy !
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Needs to be seen on Blu Ray, 15 Dec 2013
By 
Mr. D. Cooper "Deano" (England Wolverhampton) - See all my reviews
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This is the most incredible blu ray i have ever seen. Its right up there with Alien in terms of picture quality. For a film of its time, the picture is near flawless.

As for the movie itself, what can i say that hasn't already been said? It has to be seen to be believed. Kubrick is a genius
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 2001 - A Space Odyssey [Blu-ray] [Region Free], 15 Dec 2013
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The movie is absolutely fantastic, I sincerely doubt there is any need for another review of the story itself - there are enough of those everywhere - let's just say that 97% at Rotten Tomatoes says it all.

What's worth underlining is the image quality - and it is astonishing! Everything is sharp with great contrast and colour. It's a delight to watch on a Full HD screen, where all the details are greatly visible, including all the labels, instructions and other texts on the spaceships. Flawless transfer, and considering it's a flick from 1968 it's almost unbelievable how good it looks, even by today's standards.

Sound-wise everything is great, it's nice to have uncompressed PCM audio track.

Absolute must-have for any sci-fi fan!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Greatest Sci-fi film ever!, 6 Sep 2012
After watching 2001 A Space Odyssey i'm left speech less. Stanely Kubrick is, in my eyes, the greatest director of all time. Its one of those films that comes along every so often and blows your mind. Its so ahead of its time, even compared to today it looks lightyears beyond anything else.

The film is split into four different sections and revolves around mysterious black monoliths. The main bulk is about the voyage of two astronaunts to Jupiter to find out more about these monoliths. Its hard to truely understand what Kubrick is trying to tell you, yet this leaves it open to your own opinion. Kubrick is taking us on an epic journey from the beginning of humanity to something even bigger. From caveman to spaceman to star-child.

Visually this the greatest film of all time. I was left in stunned by how amazing the visual images were, especially considering the films age. Space has never and will never look so glourious. While the 'star gate' sequence is unbelievably good. The soundtrack is breath taking. Just watch the scene were The Blue Danube plays as rockets float in space, it really is incredible. The visuals and music are key as there is very little dialogue (none at all in the opening and closing 25 minutes).

The cast is excellent. Keir Dullea is superb as the cold and intense David Bowman as is Gary Lockwood as the more relaxed Franke Poole. Dullea's strong personality and features help greatly with the lack of talk. While Dogulas Rain's eerie voice works wonders as intellegent computer HAL-9000.

2001 A Space Odyssey is one of the greatest films of all time and really needs to be seen just to believe how great it is.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 1968 Yet You'd Think It Was Made Yesterday, 25 April 2012
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I bought this on DVD because as much as I'd heard a lot about this film I had never seen it.

Believe me - the optical illusions created in this film would convince you it was made yesterday.

There is zero CGI in this film - it is all done with optical effects/props and camera trickery.

Considering everything is done on the cheap with CGI nowadays - it is needless to say that this film is something you must have.

It is films like these where the maker's put in the passionate effort to create as realistic and illusion as possible with real life people and real life sets, where you feel totally entertained.

Like you believed Christopher Reeve really could fly, you'll believe these guys really are in zero gravity.
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2001: A Space Odyssey [HD DVD] [1968] [US Import]
2001: A Space Odyssey [HD DVD] [1968] [US Import] by Stanley Kubrick (HD DVD - 2007)
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