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Kubrick's Cinema Odyssey Paperback – 1 Jun 2001

4.5 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 196 pages
  • Publisher: British Film Institute; 2001 edition (1 Jun. 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0851708390
  • ISBN-13: 978-0851708393
  • Product Dimensions: 15.5 x 1.4 x 24.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 483,320 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description

From the Back Cover

Author wrote bestselling bfi Publishing title David Lynch "a joy to the reader of film criticism" Choice; 2001: A Space Odyssey to be re-released in cinemas in The Spring and highly likely to be the focus of much media attention in the new year; Stanley Kubrick's 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968), based on Arthur C Clarke's novel, is one of the most ambitious films ever made, an epic of space exploration that takes in the whole history of humanity (as well as speculation about its future). A technical triumph that stands up today 2001 is topical also because of its meditation on the relationship between man, animal and machine. Haunting and enigmatic, it's a film that contains myriad images that seem to defy any explanation. In this multilayered study, acclaimed critic and theorist of film sound Michel Chion offers some keys to understanding 2001. Setting the film first in its historical and cultural contexts (the Space Race, the Cold War, 1960s psychedelia), Chion goes on to locate it within Kubrick's career. He then conducts a meticulous and subtle analysis of its structure and style, arguing that 2001 is an 'absolute film', a unique assemblage of cinema's elements, through which pulses a vision of human existence. 'Animals who know they will die, beings lost on earth, forever caught between two species, not animal enough, not cerebral enough.' In a supplementary chapter Chion argues that Kubrick's last film, Eyes Wide Shut (1999), is a return to 2001, a final statement of its concerns. And in a series of appendices Chion provides production details, an analytic synopsis, credits and a consideration of the legacy of 2001.

About the Author

Michel Chion is a film-maker, lecturer and Cahiers du Cinema critic. He is the author of David Lynch (bfi, 1995) and a series of books on sound, including The Voice in Cinema.

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Format: Paperback
More than thirty years after it's original release "2001: A Space Odysssey" remains as mystical and mystifying now as it did then. Few who have seen it have not enjoyed it on some level, but far far fewer would claim to understand it. Perhaps the beauty of this film is that is was not meant to be understood in the literal manner that we have become accustomed to, but,as this book suggests, should be approached as a meditation on themes and an exploration of what cinema is. The books' subject matter alone might lead some to believe it will be equally dense and difficult to understand, but in fact it is clearly written in a style that is intelligent, provocative and clear without being overly academical. It places the film within a historical and artistic context, examining the global events of the time as well as placing the film within Kubrick's body of work. It then goes on to examine in great detail the film from a much more unusual perspective....which I'll leave for those of you that are sufficiently interested to find out for yourselves. I won't claim that this book will tell you what "2001..." is about, but it makes some very interesting suggestions as to what Kubrick was trying to do with this film, and for that alone it is thoroughly well worth reading!! Highly recommended.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
great book
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 4.0 out of 5 stars 1 review
5 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars flawed but worthwhile 20 April 2002
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
This analysis of 2001 is one of the most unique and enlightening I've read to date. It finally acknowledges Kubrick's brilliant use of sound and music which few other directors besides Godard and Scorsese have ever rivaled. It's utterly perplexing, however, that for all of Chion's insights he fails to even acknowledge Kubrick's manipulation of Ligeti's "Adventures" for the alien sounds in the 18th Century bedroom sequence (and the composer's successful legal action for this alteration.) His interpretation of "Eyes Wide Shut" is simply bizarre and neglects to regard the return of Ligeti's music and its insistent and concise use in the film. Regardless, Chion's book certainly expands on the formal understanding of what still remains the greatest film ever made.
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