This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.
Xebeche’s review published on Letterboxd:
This review may contain spoilers.
For me, no viewing of 2001: A Space Odyssey is quite like the other. It's deep and ambiguous and there's a lot to chew on. On this viewing I noticed something pretty bloody awesome: we see HAL well before the Jupiter mission.
I'm sure I'm not the first person to see this (I've mostly avoided reading up on interpretations because I like the experience of private analysis with this film). In my interpretation, the monolith acts as a trigger for human advancement. It inspires the ape to develop a weapon, possibly by terrifying him with it's foreign design. A flat, straight-edged construct in an organic world. So monolith = bone as a club. I'd previously considered HAL to be a distant extension of that same weaponization. But now I'm feeling like HAL is not the bone. HAL is the ape. The third chapter of man. Because HAL's violence against the crew is also inspired by the monolith based on his precarious conversation with Dave leading up to his "just a moment... just a moment..." conniption, which is the beginning of his assault.
Anyway, HAL shows up in The Dawn of Man chapter as a quick but ominous foreshadowing. The shot just before the first ape wakes up to find the monlith is that of a sunrise. Except for the black horizon cutting it in half, it is a match shot of HAL's infamous close up. It's the same red-orange shade with the same gradient of light that HAL emits. Check it out. It's totally HAL in the sky right before the monolith first appears.