Film: 2010: The Year We Make Contact

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Film:

2010: The Year We Make Contact

Director: Peter Hyams
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Distributor: Warner Home Video

No director could ever have hoped to repeat the artistic achievement of Stanley Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey, and nobody knew that better than Peter Hyams, who made this much more conventional film from the first of three sequel novels by Arthur C. Clarke. Whereas Kubrick made a poetic film of mind-expanding ideas and metaphysical mysteries, Hyams shouldn’t be blamed for taking a more practical, crowd-pleasing approach. In revealing much of what Kubrick deliberately left unexplained, 2010 lacks the enigmatic awe of its predecessor, but it’s still…

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No director could ever have hoped to repeat the artistic achievement of Stanley Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey, and nobody knew that better than Peter Hyams, who made this much more conventional film from the first of three sequel novels by Arthur C. Clarke. Whereas Kubrick made a poetic film of mind-expanding ideas and metaphysical mysteries, Hyams shouldn’t be blamed for taking a more practical, crowd-pleasing approach. In revealing much of what Kubrick deliberately left unexplained, 2010 lacks the enigmatic awe of its predecessor, but it’s still a riveting tale of space exploration and extraterrestrial contact, beginning when a joint American-Soviet mission embarks to determine the cause of failure of the derelict spaceship Discovery. Having arrived at Discovery near the planet Jupiter, the American mission leader (Roy Scheider) and his Russian counterpart (Helen Mirren) must investigate the apparent failure of the ship’s infamous onboard computer, HAL 9000, as well as the meaning of countless mysterious black monoliths amassing on Jupiter’s surface (an interpretation Kubrick originally left up to his viewers). Meanwhile, Earth is on the brink of nuclear war, and an apparition of astronaut David Bowman (Keir Dullea) appears to repeatedly promise that “something wonderful” is about to happen. The DVD includes an interview with Arthur C. Clarke, an eight-page booklet, and original trailers for 2001 and 2010. —Jeff Shannon

Related Works

Book:2010: Odyssey Two

2010: Odyssey Two

Arthur C. Clarke

2001: A Space Odyssey shocked, amazed, and delighted millions in the late 1960s. An instant book and movie classic, its fame has grown over the years. Yet along with the almost universal acclaim, a host of questions has grown more insistent through the years, for example: who or what transformed Dave Bowman into the Star-Child? What alien purpose lay behind the monoliths on the Moon and out in space? What could drive HAL to kill the crew? Now all those questions and many more have been answered, in this stunning sequel to the international bestseller. Cosmic in sweep, eloquent in its depiction of Man’s place in the Universe, and filled with the romance of space, this novel is a monumental achievement and a must-read for Arthur C. Clarke fans old and new.

“A daring romp through the solar system and a worthy successor to 2001.” —Carl Sagan

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