2001: A Space Odyssey

2001: A Space Odyssey ★★★★★


A few notes on the Christopher Nolan-supervised 'unrestored' 70mm print:

- First off, it was indescribably gorgeous. Deep, limitless blacks, sharp and distinct range of colors, and off-the-chart clarity. 65mm photography doesn't merely allow for a greater appreciation of the composition or the 'look' - it frees up each individual element to be its finest, most perfect self. Want to focus on faces? Go ahead. In it for the location and set design? It's all yours. Fascinated by gestural details and minutiae? Knock yourself out. 2001: A Space Odyssey, in 70mm, from sound to image and presentation, allows the art to fully speak for itself.

- That thought and consideration is so beautiful to me, so I was a mess for basically the entire experience. The lights were dimmed to the rhythm of the rising 'overture' score, and the certain expanded as the original MGM logo popped into view. As goofy as it sounds, I wish I could've thanked the projectionist, because it's far more than what goes into the timed auditoriums and digital packages of chain theatres. Kubrick would've been proud. The print itself was true to form and full of little particularities and flaws, which was of no real issue to me.

- As for the movie - well, it's still pretty good, I guess. The pleasure of 70mm confirmed it as the greatest technical spectacle in the history of the medium. No film can inspire as great, as pure of awe as this one can. The dance of the 'ape' performers, the sudden journey to the world of the future, the particulars of commercialized space travel, as well as the inherent melancholy of the void around us: It's sublime and wistful. A great acknowledgement of our curiosities and faults, and an visual/aural powerhouse. The magnetic track of the print practically pushed the wind out of me (the monolith encounter on the moon, especially), with the alien sounds of the climax sending me into a final, transcendent daze. So, yeah, it was fun.

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