APRIL 3, 1968
With its multi-dimensional storyline, complex metaphors, and stunning visual effects, 2001: A Space Odyssey is one of the most ambitious science fiction films ever created.
The film was inspired by a 1951 short story by Arthur C. Clarke, “The Sentinel.” Director Stanley Kubrick and Clarke developed the screenplay together, with Clarke simultaneously writing a novel version of the same story. Visual effects took two years to produce and included many pioneering techniques by effects supervisor Douglas Trumbull. The cast included Keir Dullea as Dr. David Bowman, Gary Lockwood as Dr. Frank Poole, and Douglas Rain voicing the computer HAL 9000.
The film explores themes of human evolution and possible godhood in a cool, moody style that is unlike most science fiction film created before or since. The space visuals are quite realistic and scientifically accurate, while the end is a psychedelic panorama that strives to convey transcendence in purely visual terms.