2001 Space Odyssey
The film segment chosen was the final scene from Stanley Kubrik^s 2001
A Space Odyssey made in 1968. As the name would suggest, the film is
set almost entirely in the future. Already having projected itself over
30 years into the future, it would be safe to assume that this motion
picture offers a wealth of imagery and futuristic vision. It does. It
is towards the end of the film, however, that Kubrik offers this to us
on a much greater scale. In these few minutes, we are presented with
the dawn of a new era: a near incomprehensible evolution of humanity.
Through many complex design devices, the set design successfully
achieves a vision for the future that is neither dystopian, nor
entirely utopian, yet extraordinarily positive on a revolutionary
Kubrik himself has never publicly discussed the ending to 2001 and
admits that this was a very subjective film, while many people claim
not to have understood it at all.
Many interpretations have been made
as to the real meaning of this scene, many incredibly different and
most equally plausible. Despite their differences, however, all have
one thing in common: an overwhelmingly optimistic vision for the
A few example interpretations include alien intervention: an idea that
alien technology has helped man progress to the ^next level^ of
consciousness; to an understanding beyond the physical realm. Others
adopt the idea of the emergence of man as pure thought completely of
his own accord.
It is for this reason that the futuristic vision expressed in this
scene cannot be labeled simply utopian. What viewers are offered during
this scene spans far beyond an idealistic version of the world we live
in today: various connotations found in the scene stretch the bounds
and horizons of humanity itself.