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Awesome, influential, mind-blowing, cool, obsessional, pretentious - 2001 is all of these. That it is both great and gobbledygook is still fascinating. Certainly it deviates from Kubrick's claimed intention to make a 'proverbial good science-fiction movie', as it defies genre and is unlike any science-fiction film before it, good or gawd-awful.
Whether you read this film as a mysterious adventure, a symbolic sermon or a mystic vision, one haunting conclusion is inescapable: how disappointing that it is 2001 and we're still tribal apes enthralled by technology, a very long way from becoming children of the stars.