The fun folks over at Film School Rejects have just released a clever video which deals with the classic movie 2001: A Space Odyssey and how the trailers would look if the movie were relaunched today. As a big fan of 2001, I couldn’t help but enjoy the presentation and think that it was bang on with its not-so-subtle commentary on how things have changed over the years.
I can remember watching this movie when I was a child. Being too young to appreciate its nuances and complex plot, the only thing I remember was that many scenes had no sound. It was explained to me that this is because there is no sound in space. Suddenly Star Wars didn’t make any sense to me! But being too big a fan of that space opera, I chose to compartmentalize this knowledge and strategically ignore it whenever fun space simulators and sci-fi movies came out that broke this rule.
Years later, I would see the movie again as a young adult, when I was old enough to appreciate it. I did so in the hopes that I would understand it and why the movie has remained such an enduring classic. Of course I could see why, but I also didn’t fail to notice the many extended, and I mean really extended, scenes where space ships and space stations danced around in carefully choreographed display set to classical music. Beautiful, inspiring, but they sure could test your patience.
My mother noticed this too and wondered if anyone could get away with such things in today’s world. As a child of the sixties, she had seen this movie when it first came out and witnessed the stark changes that had taken place in cinema ever since. I recall observing that unlike today’s movies 2001 was shot in a time when “people still had attention spans”. She thought that was funny and reminds me of this from time to time, you know how parents are In any case, that’s what came to mind when I saw this trailer the other day.
Editing to ensure maximum effect in a minimum amount of time, and taking advantage of all the latest flashy editing techniques, FSR reminds us that at one time, people were willing to hear a presentation out. That is to say, they were willing to wait longer for a point to be made and didn’t demand explosions, cut scenes and loud music every few seconds just to stay interested. Take that Michael Bay!