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Sci-Fi Movies Entertainment

Christopher Nolan Returns Kubrick Sci-Fi Masterpiece '2001: A Space Odyssey' To Its Original Glory (latimes.com) 135

LA Times' Kenneth Turan traces Christopher Nolan's meticulous restoration of Kubrick's masterpiece to its 70-mm glory: Christopher Nolan wants to show me something interesting. Something beautiful and exceptional, something that changed his life when he was a boy. It's also something that Nolan, one of the most accomplished and successful of contemporary filmmakers, has persuaded Warner Bros. to share with the world both at the upcoming Cannes Film Festival and then in theaters nationwide, but in a way that boldly deviates from standard practice.

For what is being cued up in a small, hidden-away screening room in an unmarked building in Burbank is a brand new 70-mm reel of film of one of the most significant and influential motion pictures ever made, Stanley Kubrick's 1968 science-fiction epic "2001: A Space Odyssey." Yes, you read that right. Not a digital anything, an actual reel of film that was for all intents and purposes identical to the one Nolan saw as a child and Kubrick himself would have looked at when the film was new half a century ago.

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Christopher Nolan Returns Kubrick Sci-Fi Masterpiece '2001: A Space Odyssey' To Its Original Glory

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  • Great (Score:5, Funny)

    by rodrigoandrade ( 713371 ) on Friday May 04, 2018 @03:41PM (#56555714)
    Now where's the 4K torrent of that beauty?
    • by darkain ( 749283 )

      Why settle for less? This generation is all about 8k now! Get with the times n00b.

    • I mean to be honest you would need an 8k scan of a 70mm to perfectly capture everything. But even then according Nolan it doesn't matter how good the scan is...

      you lose a tremendous amount of information I call emotional information.

      *gag*. I'm not sure where on the color spectrum "emotional information" lives but apparently it can't be scanned or digitally projected.

      • *gag*. I'm not sure where on the color spectrum "emotional information" lives

        Green which is probably why you gagged.

      • There is legitimate information lost when going digital - both in spatial information density (film doesn't have discrete pixels), and in color spectrum density (film doesn't introduce any quantization noise).

        It's also quite possible the film covers a different color space than your display and/or video format, in which case it can capture many colors your screen is completely incapable of displaying, and that your video format is incapable of encoding. In fact RGB, regardless of quality, is physically inca

        • Re:Great (Score:5, Informative)

          by religionofpeas ( 4511805 ) on Saturday May 05, 2018 @03:17AM (#56558208)

          film doesn't have discrete pixels), and in color spectrum density (film doesn't introduce any quantization noise).

          Film has grain, which has similar effects as discrete pixels, except that the grains are round and spread randomly.

          three different band-pass filters selected to approximately match those of the average human eye

          Not really. The band pass filters are selected to cover the visible spectrum in 3, more or less, equal parts. The receptors in a human eye are not spread out evenly. We have a blue cone on one side of the spectrum, and then two overlapping yellow-green/yellow-red cones on the other side. The "red" cones also have some sensitivity for extreme blue (that's why that appears as purple).

          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/... [wikipedia.org]

        • Re:Great (Score:5, Informative)

          by Required Snark ( 1702878 ) on Saturday May 05, 2018 @05:07AM (#56558396)
          There is no media that recreates the full range of color vision. The colors that can be displayed are the color gamut. [wikipedia.org]

          There is noise in both electronic recording and analog recording. Film has grain [wikipedia.org] and mechanical uncertainly from the camera and the projector. This is due to physical positioning uncertainty when a frame is exposed or projected (or scanned). The perfs (square holes) that hold the film in place have tolerances and so do the mechanics of the film gate, which holds the film in place. No two sequential frames are in the exact same location.

          Electronic image sensors have intrinsic noise as do electronic projectors. Both also have a quantized grid that limits the spacial resolution. Film also has grain characteristics that limit spacial resolution.

          From a practical standpoint, current 4K camera and display technology are very similar to the best motion picture film standards. The electronic production process has no mechanical position variability like film and it is possible to track color from the camera source to the projector, so color reproduction can be better then film. The gamut of electronic projection is greater then any film stock, although film can record subtle shades that seem to be missing in electronic recording and projection.

          • Oh absolutely - my intended point was that analog does things differently, and thus has different *kinds* of information loss, even at the same overall quality (assuming some way to objectively measure such a thing) . There is therefore an valid, objective basis for claiming a qualitative difference in the watching experience, even if you don't understand the science behind it.

            On to a technical discussion -

            Could you refer me to some source on the RGB frequency distribution choice? Google is being uncooper

  • Too Bad (Score:1, Insightful)

    by sexconker ( 1179573 )

    Too bad the movie sucks. It's one of the most overrated movies of all time. It's slow, boring, and non-sensical.

    It's a Kubric film, so if you turn up the volume you can hear him softly masturbating throughout each long, drawn out scene.
    It's based on Clarke's work, so you may as well turn it off half way through and make up your own ending. You'll get a better result than Clarke, and you'll get it much sooner.

    Oh, look! Here come the zealots to tell me how I'm too stupid to "get" it, how the scenes at the e

    • by Anonymous Coward

      This.
      I don't get the hype around that movie. I couldn't even sit through half of it.

      • by Monster_user ( 5075027 ) on Friday May 04, 2018 @06:29PM (#56556544)
        Star Trek The Motion Picture tried to match the pacing. The series did not retain that slow pace. Most will agree that it is too slow.

        That said, we are on the far side of history from this film. Much of the awe and wonder is passé, we've seen it so many times before. Many of the technological advances of the film have already been surpassed in this decade.

        In addition, the artistic and ambiguous ending has already been brought closer to reality in other media, tales, and plotlines. It is more interesting now as a historical piece to give us insight into the limitations of the imaginations of previous generations.
    • by ChoGGi ( 522069 )

      >Hey Kubrick! Are you ever gonna get around to writing the second half of Full Metal Jacket?
      Never?

    • Re:Too Bad (Score:5, Insightful)

      by jfdavis668 ( 1414919 ) on Friday May 04, 2018 @03:58PM (#56555812)
      Sorry, but I find it one of the greatest movies ever made. It's one I often watch again. Except for the 20 min color montage toward the end, I fast forward through that. The movie uses perspectives that aren't often used in motion pictures any more, and rarely in the past. It works to put you into the perspective of the subject, and you only know what he knows. It doesn't explain the situation to you, you have to experience it and figure it out just as the subject does, too. People don't seem to like movies that make you think, they want everything handed to them so they can sit there like a lump.
      • There is no right answer, but somehow, you've both managed to be wrong.

      • by Anonymous Coward

        ^ Exactly.

        I rewatch 2001 every 10 years. I almost always find some new interpretation or concept to think about. It is a very deep movie, but it doesn't hold your hand like most modern films do nor, like parent poster said, tell you what to think.

        It's a complex allegory about the relationship of mankind to the tools we create, and it is probably more applicable to today's world than the 1960's world in which it was created. I'd put it in the top 5 movies of all time, of any genre, and any era.

        I understan

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by Anonymous Coward

          It's a complex allegory

          No it's not.

          It's a boring, meandering story that doesn't make sense. The phrases "it's deep" and "you just don't get it" are always the first clue that something isn't very good.

      • Re: Too Bad (Score:2, Insightful)

        2001: A Space Odyssey doesn't provide much to think about anymore either. Movie audiences have typically been exposed to a significant portion of the contents of 2001, or even better rendentions. Half the movie is concepts which evolved into much more practical and fully formed things which are common today, be they ideas, narrative constructs (plots/universe building), or technologies.

        The universe which 2001 builds is a rather small one compared to the worlds most audiences are used to these days, and i
      • People don't seem to like movies that make you think, they want everything handed to them so they can sit there like a lump.

        This reminds me of Cast Away which I thought was a decent go of making the audience think (by not really having much of a script). Then at the end they go and ruin it by continuing past the rescue scene, and have him go and explain everything for all the stupid people.

      • by Cederic ( 9623 )

        I find it one of the greatest movies ever made. It's one I often watch again. Except for the 20 min color montage toward the end, I fast forward through that.

        How much do you skip from lesser films then? Let me guess, "Back To The Future was ok, except for the bit after the opening credits, I fast forward through that".

        People don't seem to like movies that make you think

        Films that make you think are commercially successful if they're good films. Films that bore you senseless make you think, "When is this tedious shit going to finish" and you fast forward through 20 minutes towards the end.

        Oh, wait.

      • by Toad-san ( 64810 )

        I was _very_ glad that I'd already read the book. I was the only one, it appears, in the Monterey movie theater who had a clue as to what was going on, so many people from 2-3 rows and seats around kept asking me "What's going on now?"

        Heh, only time I found myself useful during a movie.

    • Re:Too Bad (Score:5, Informative)

      by jlv ( 5619 ) on Friday May 04, 2018 @04:03PM (#56555844)

      Yes, based upon Clarke's earlier work. But not based upon is book of the same name (which was developed in parallel and came out after the movie premiered).
      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/... [wikipedia.org]

    • by Anonymous Coward

      Hey Kubrick! Are you ever gonna get around to writing the second half of Full Metal Jacket?

      To get that script you'll need the sufficiently advanced technology that can only be understood by taking acid while lobotomizing yourself while listening some Ligeti very loud, of course.

    • Re:Too Bad (Score:5, Insightful)

      by UnknownSoldier ( 67820 ) on Friday May 04, 2018 @04:13PM (#56555902)

      I highly would recommend Meditation and/or Fishing to help with your monkey mind [wikipedia.org] -- constantly jumping from thought to thought without taking a moment to analyze where the thought came from; unable to enjoy the moment for what it is.

    • Re:Too Bad (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Thelasko ( 1196535 ) on Friday May 04, 2018 @04:55PM (#56556100) Journal

      Too bad the movie sucks. It's one of the most overrated movies of all time. It's slow, boring, and non-sensical.

      I enjoy the film, but agree that these are totally valid critiques. A lot is open to interpretation, the ending especially so.

      In defense of the slow and boring. That's how space travel would be. Clarke and Kubrick were striving to be realistic. This movie is a stark contrast to the shoot-em-up action of most science fiction movies. However, mixing that realism with its heavy metaphors was a confusing choice.

      Although I think it's still incredible to this day, it should also be noted this was 1968. 2001 was revolutionary in its day. Not as much now. (I give the Beatles the same handicap. I don't think most of their music stands the test of time, but it was revolutionary in its day. Go ahead, flame me)

      Hey Kubrick! Are you ever gonna get around to writing the second half of Full Metal Jacket? I like what I saw, but the projectionist swapped in a different film halfway through. Strangely, this mistake has been repeated on every video/DVD/etc. release I've seen so far. If you need some help finishing, maybe give John Kricfalusi a call, he's known for timely work!

      Oh, yeah. There are is a major continuity issue with Full Metal Jacket. It feels like two separate movies, with the first being more enjoyable. I argue that it was likely done on purpose, to mark the contrast between training and actual war.

      Kubrick was the kind of director that was in it for the art, like it or not. A lot of directors crank out film after film to keep a steady paycheck. He was slow and methodical, until it was the way he wanted it. (although he did edit 2001 after the first screening due to complaints similar to yours)

      • Although I think it's still incredible to this day, it should also be noted this was 1968. 2001 was revolutionary in its day. Not as much now. (I give the Beatles the same handicap. I don't think most of their music stands the test of time, but it was revolutionary in its day. Go ahead, flame me)

        Same here. There is nothing from the 60's that even comes close to 2001 for the story telling. The pace was low, but it's supposed to be. And I agree with the Beatles comment too. Musically they weren't brilliant, but for their time the songwriting was phenomenal, and luckily expert musicianship wasn't really a thing until the 70's.

        • by Cederic ( 9623 )

          There is nothing from the 60's that even comes close to 2001 for the story telling.

          Look, I can understand you not liking Laurence of Arabia, Spartacus, Dr Strangelove, Zulu, Belle de Jour, Bonnie and Clyde, "The Good, the Bad and the Ugly", Planet of the Apes, Once Upon a Time in the West, The Italian Job and "They Shoot Horses, Don't They?"

          However every single one of them tells a story far better than 2001, and several of them are far better cinema too.

          • There is nothing from the 60's that even comes close to 2001 for the story telling.

            Look, I can understand you not liking Laurence of Arabia, Spartacus, Dr Strangelove, Zulu, Belle de Jour, Bonnie and Clyde, "The Good, the Bad and the Ugly", Planet of the Apes, Once Upon a Time in the West, The Italian Job and "They Shoot Horses, Don't They?"

            However every single one of them tells a story far better than 2001, and several of them are far better cinema too.

            Sorry I meant Sci-fi storytelling. You are right, I've seen most of those movies and they are great, but anything sci-fi of that era was mostly spaghetti.

      • Das Boot succeeded in the same format to convey tedium alongside terror: use a very long edit.

    • I am sort of middle-ground. I do think the movie is overrated and it is one of my least favourite Kubrick movies (my favourite are Dr. Strangelove, Barry Lyndon, Clockwork Orange - probably in that order), but I can appreciate how it is ground-braking and visually (and audibly) stunning - especially in its day, but remarkably holding up. If it were not for 2 needlessly long sequences: the start with the apes, and the approaching the monolith psychedelia, as well as a much more cryptic than required and tiri

    • Oh, look! Here come the zealots to tell me

      We're not telling you anything. We'll just quote you without context:

      I'm too stupid to "get" it

    • by epine ( 68316 )

      Hey Kubrick! Are you ever gonna get around to writing the second half of Full Metal Jacket?

      People tend to rate sex highly, until they try heroine.

      Sapolsky's book from last year, Behave, has a lot of material on how our dopaminic system rescales itself to available stimulus. The book is 800 pages long, and every page so far is dense with neuroanatomy. Unbelievably good, but I'm guessing it's not sexconker's preferred Flaming Doctor Pepper [wikipedia.org] bomb shot.

      For the record, the first time I read Lord of the Rings (a

    • Go back to watching Power Rangers you moron. It's obviously your type of entertainment.

      I suggest that you stay where your are in your parent's basement until he finishes the Fill Metal Jacket sequel. (Kubrick died in 1999.)

  • Timeless film (Score:4, Insightful)

    by TheZeitgeist ( 5083373 ) on Friday May 04, 2018 @04:02PM (#56555842)
    2001 still most compelling sci-fi movie ever made. Haters can't stand the long cut scenes etc., but then go watch a (so fake its painful to watch) CGI Midtown fall down in 'new' way for Avengers 57 or whatever.
    • by Anonymous Coward

      I'm not sure it's that 'timeless'. So much stuff done in the 60s and 70s suffers from a design aesthetic which is ... well, ugly, because it was so period specific.

      I've watched 2001 several times, and while I think it's a good film, I'm not sure I'd say it's the most compelling sci-fi film ever made.

      Parts of it just drag on, and while it's probably the most faithful realism for space flight, it still makes for some very long scenes of "OK, nothing is really happening here" ... followed by sudden loud noise

      • Re:Timeless film (Score:5, Insightful)

        by TheZeitgeist ( 5083373 ) on Friday May 04, 2018 @04:47PM (#56556060)

        Well, with the current Avengers nipping on the heels of generating a billion dollars in just over a week ... you pretty much have to recognise that it's clearly what people want.

        Absolutely that tripe is what people want. Along with Big Macs and another report on Kendall Jenner's choice of latte on Tuesdays. Mass-market crap is just that. I will say this though, in 50 years nobody is going to talk about Infinity Blade or Kendall Jenner (jury's out on Big Macs) as they discuss the 100th anniversary of this film.

        • We are at least 3/4 of the way there. In 50 years they won't even know what 2001 is/was. They may think it's a documentary.
    • by neoRUR ( 674398 )

      I know some people will find it slow and boring, but you have to remember when it came out.

      There was no Internet, computers, handheld phones, no connection to anyone in the world.

      I was a kid when I saw it, in re-runs and it was something that has stuck with me all my life, along with Blade Runner and Laurence of Arabia.
      They are all really Epic movies with Epic depth.

      To me it's about the AI, the silence and the long parts that let you think and feel the movie.
      Maybe when your a kid and watch it and yo

      • There was no Internet, computers, handheld phones, no connection to anyone in the world.

        In 1968 if you wanted a phone in a particular room, as opposed to the main phone usually a wall phone in the kitchen, you had to make an appointment to have somebody from the phone company come to your house and install an 'extension' phone. Phones were connected to the network with screw terminals under a screwed down cover. From the user's point of view, they were permanently attached to the wall.

        For 99% of everyone, nobody really knew anybody, ever, in person, who had appeared on television. It was a big

        • In 1968 if you wanted a phone in a particular room, as opposed to the main phone usually a wall phone in the kitchen, you had to make an appointment to have somebody from the phone company come to your house and install an 'extension' phone.

          The house I lived in was built in 1960. It had telephone wiring installed in every room of the house, including the bathrooms, by my father, who did not work for the telephone company. When we wanted to string a line to the barn we went to Radio Shack to buy a spool of wire and an outlet (the old four-pin kind) and did it ourselves. The demarc was on the pole about 20 feet from the house, and we took care of everything on our side of it.

          There was one person who worked for "the phone company" in town. We kn

      • I know some people will find it slow and boring, but you have to remember when it came out.

        I just finished watching one of those "top 100 movies ever made" list. More than half of those movies were older than "2001", but it was surely the slowest of them all.

  • Full comprehension (Score:5, Insightful)

    by NEDHead ( 1651195 ) on Friday May 04, 2018 @04:17PM (#56555926)

    I saw this when it first came out, as an adult and fan of SciFi. I came away secure in the knowledge that I understood the point of the movie every bit as completely as Kubrick - which was not at all. Nice visuals for the time. A plot would have been a nice touch.

    • It is mostly Nietzsche's _Also Sprach Zarathustra_, and Clarke and Kubrick knew it.

      The opening music isn't an accident.

      for what Wikipedia's worth (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thus_Spoke_Zarathustra): " More specifically, this note related to the concept of the eternal recurrence, which is, by Nietzsche's admission, the central idea of Zarathustra; this idea occurred to him by a **"pyramidal block of stone"** on the shores of Lake Silvaplana in the Upper Engadine, "

      "Another singular feature of Zarathustra
      • I always suspected that HAL's issues were not with the technology, but with the humans.
        • by mbkennel ( 97636 )
          That HAL had a problem with the humans is made more explicit in the novels, and the fault was the humans who made it.

          In particular the HAL aboard the Discovery One was told a secret about the true nature of the mission (to find what the first monolith transmitted to) which wasn't revealed to its counterpart on Earth or most of the crew. Reasoning that humans were fallible and their presence was more likely to compromise the mission and more risky than retaining them, HAL attempted to eliminate them.

          HAL didn
  • First time (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Dusthead Jr. ( 937949 ) on Friday May 04, 2018 @04:27PM (#56555970)
    I remember the first time I saw 2001. I was at my grandmothers place and it was on cable. I didn't see it from the begining, I came in on the star gate scene. I was sitting there thinking WTF am I watching? I liked it. Then came the hotel scene, then the star child scene. Even eventually after watching the whole movie I still didn't get it. It wasn't until I read the book that it made any sense. When ever I read 2001 I visualize it as the movie because I can't think of anything better. I even imagine Heywood Floyd portrayed by Roy Scheider.
    • I remember the first time I saw the movie 2001. It was in a theatre in Green Bay, Wisconsin in 1968.

  • by Anonymous Coward
    The advanced AI, daily spaceflight with established lunar colony and space hotels, none of that came to pass by 2001 (or has even yet).

    But during the video phone call to his daughter (played by Kubrick's daughter), Heywood Floyd asks her what she wants for her birthday.
    Her reply: "A Bush Baby"

    Which is exactly what the US got for a president in 2001. I shit you not.
  • by weeboo0104 ( 644849 ) on Friday May 04, 2018 @05:51PM (#56556392) Journal

    I loved the camera work and cuts in Interstellar. Same with the soundtrack.
    What would it take to convince Chris Nolan to take on Clarke's Rama books and transfer to the big screen?
    Can you imagine seeing the inside of the Rama spacecraft on an IMAX screen?

    • Can you imagine seeing the inside of the Rama spacecraft on an IMAX screen?

      You don't have to imagine, Elysium already ripped this concept off...

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