2001: A Space Oddysey – According to Theophaneia

2001: A Space Oddysey – According to Theophaneia
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Brief Synopsis:
An epic voyage from the primitive life-forms on Earth, to the birth of a god-like being.
Restore as far as I could what Stanley Kubrick originally envisioned when he started the project in collaboration with Arthur C. Clark.
Other Sources:
2001 the original Alex North Soundtrack
Editing Details:
The idea was in paper some time ago, after watching WALL-E, but one day I was kinda bored, so I edited it with Corel VideoStudio X3 to make it as fast as I could.
Cuts and Additions:
* The most prominent change is the fact that most of the classical music has been replaced for the original Alex North Soundtrack, which Kubrick initially ordered but ultimately didn’t use. No more Zaratustra here! Man, at the time, that was great, but after a very long list of parodies (WALL-E included), I can’t control my laugh every time I listen it… that’s the main reason this whole proyect started in the first place.
* Added Interview with Carl Sagan on Search of Alien Intelligence, somehow rebuilding the 10 minutes long interview segment Kubrick shot but ultimately discarted due studio pressures.
* The Initial Credits run while “Main Theme” sounds instead of “Thus Spoke Zaratustra”.
* The planetary alineation has been overhauled by the use of a post-production lensflare to get a brighter sun.
* Title of the film changed to “2001: A Space Odyssey according to Theophaneia”.
* Longer black pause before “The Dawn of Man” Segment.
* Edited to synchonize with “The Foraging” track until humanoids appear. Some aditional / alternative shots from Koyaanisqatsi were used. It’s a bit shorter. Also, the music track seems to foretell an observer, looking for something or someone…
* Longer black pause between the first fight for water and “Night Terrors” segment.
* Added “Night Terrors” track in the intented scene. Almost no cuts and it synchonized itself!
* The First Monolith is far more active this time thanks to the new fx’s.
* Moonwatcher learns how to use the bone with “The Dawn of Man” track as soundtrack.
* The First Monolyth stays with Moonwatcher’s tribe for more than one day. Or does it reappear?
* After the legendary flying-bone-that-becomes-spaceship shot, some outer space shots were cut down to accelerate the pacing, with new parallel montage between the space nuclear arsenal and Dr Floyd’s levitating pen. Also, the Pan-Am spaceship is really flying towards the Space Station. The whole scene was edited to fit “Space Station Docking” track. Some small fx improvement.
* When Dr Floyd is apologizing to his daughter for not been present for her birthday, there’s a new insert of the Space Station contemplating the Earth, almost foreshadowing the Starchild…
* Cutted down the exhaustive instructions to use the zero gravity bathroom. It has a meaning I’m aware of, but only delays the fast pacing I’ve intended.
* The trip to the moon has been re-edited to synchronize… “Trip to the Moon” (duh!), cutting out a lot to make the scene more active and faster in pacing. Color correction was exercised on some shots, as well as a discrete lensflare to denote depth.
The moonbus is travelling in the same optical direction for the first time! Some of the aereal shots have been flipped, in order to avoid innecesary and awful axis jumps.
* When Dr Floyd’s ship is arriving to Tycho Crater, some dialogs are heard while the ship is traveling instead of while the crew is eating. Most of the eating part of the scene is gone for good. The semiotic message is still there, in this scene as well as in the one before this one, so it was trimmed down.
* The Second Monolyth is more frightening now…
* In the “18 Months Later” secuence, the BBC Interview begins to be heard in the second shot of the Discovery I, while in a general shot. Now the scene feels more claustrophobic, so the astronauts are techonolical prisioners.
* The jogging scene has been postponed and cutted down for faster pacing. Honestly, I think this part is far too long for enjoy. Ironically, Kubrick wanted it to be even longer but I chose not to do it his way.
* Poole’s parents message comes later, just before HAL’s and Bowman’s chat on the sketches.
* The Mission Control Message audio is edited in a modern way, trimming down a little of dead time. The rest of the scene is just perfect and I didn’t touch it.
* The intermission is just the same. What else?
* Shorter HAL attack. It’s trilling now!
* Parallel montage with Poole’s dead body rescue against HAL hesitating whether or not to kill hibernized crew members…
* Once Bowman gets Poole’s body, HAL proceeds to kill the scientists… or letting them die? Overhauled biodata with vital organs termograph and a neuroscan, depicting the main organs failture due HAL’s intervention… or was that an accident HAL let happen? [This fx are courtesy of Benishe, who gave me the idea while in a long conversation on this film]
* When HAL stops “this conversation”, we can hear Bowman’s voice when the EVA is in front of the Discovery, almost giving the impression of a begging astronaut, like if Poole’s body was an offering before HAL.
* A small cut to show continuity when Bowman discards Poole’s body. Also, a little remorse by Bowman when discarding it by using Kuleshov exercise.
* When Bowman enters the Discovery again, the scene runs the same, acompanied by a fragment of “Moon Rocket Bus” cue. It synchronized itself!
* Fade out to the prerecorded message to indicate there’s more in the message onward. Bowman’s reaction now feels eerie.
* Bowman reaches the Third Monolyth a little faster.
* The Stargate is made slightly different with segments from other great films, but preserving it’s original spirit.
* The Starchild is not that pacific nowadays, just as Kubrick intended in the first place.
* The final credits have been redone to accomodate the final music.
Cover art by Theophaneia (DOWNLOAD HERE)

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(Updated: July 16, 2012)
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(Updated: July 16, 2012)
Kinda disappointed in this one..I’m guessing that you used the Goldsmith conducted version of the Alex North score, if so the timing would be all off, even if you didn’t , the Alex North scored version of the film would have been 20 minutes or so longer before the cuts made after the previews. But yeah Kubrick had it right the score is completely inappropriate for the film. As for your edit it was interesting to see definitely, there were some sound issues and cuts to the monolith during the moonwatcher attack when it should have been gone. The opening Carl Sagan bit was interesting but not very dramatic, especially before the opening credits start. Now the ending bit which I won’t mention which I’m sure you were following the book ends up being (because of how it was handled) extremely bizarre and comedic. Kubrick apparently thought it was too much like his Dr. Strangelove ending so nixed it, it also removes a lot of the ambiguity of the original ending. But after a few beers watching this I must admit me and my buddies spit out a few with laughter…maybe if you used some shots from terminator 3 or something that has a similar end. Anyways great effort, was really entertained by the audacity.
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(Updated: July 16, 2012)
Sharpened the original, and gave a stronger ending in my opinion!

A tough task, but one you rose to the challenge of!

Great job!
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(Updated: July 16, 2012)
It was a matter of time before someone took Kubrick’s Sci-Fi masterpiece and re-scored it with Alex North’s originally composed music, probably the most famous rejected score in film History. However, reports conflict on whether the studio initially imposed North as a composer and Kubrick never intended to use his music, or if the director changed his mind during the editing process, so I’m not sure if Theophaneia is accurate about presenting this as “how Kubrick originally intended”. Either way, a lot of us had wondered how the film would sound with North’s music. Here’s the answer.

PLOT: It mostly remains the same, yet there are two important differences. The first is provided by the Carl Sagan interview added as a prologue. The scientist’s mention of TV signals being transmitted out to space to be potentially received by extra-terrestrial beings does fit with the end of the novel, if not with the movie’s (althought without contradicing it) in which the room Bowman reaches is a reconstruction made by aliens after… TV signals. Think Explorers played straight and for adults. This change, however, will fly over the head of anyone not familiar with the book. The second change is the very end, in which the Star Child blows up the spaceships and satellites floating around Earth. This is supposed to represent him blowing up nuclear weaponry, but since the footage is of the ships seen earlier in the movie, it looks like the Star Child is about to destroy Humanity. Unfittingly creepy. 7.5/10.

IMAGE QUALITY: Good enough to grant approval, particularly keeping in mind that early DVD releases of the original movie looked pretty much awful, but the video of this is somewhat blurry all along, and presents slight (VERY slight) blocking in certain sequences. I have no idea how much of this is because of the original DVD and how much because of the export. Still, nothing that could ruin the viewing experience. The Sagan interview is taken from what looks like multi-generation VHS, but that’s no big deal. However, since the footage it’s replacing was originally B&W, I think making this part B&W as well and increasing the contrast would be better. Fanedit-wise, the cuts are invisible and most of the newly added images work fine, with the exception of the CGI screens during the murder of the hybernated astronauts. They are so obviously newly created that stick out like sore thumbs. Other additions and new FX are seamless. 8/10.

AUDIO QUALITY: Most of it was fine. MOST of it. I must confess that I almost gave up watching this during the Moon-watcher hitting the bones scene. First there’s a bit with no audio at all, not even background ambience, then there’s no foley work for the bone sounds, which is distracting, and then the music doesn’t seem to fit the images, with the theme really kicking in after the bones part, not to mention it gets the fadeout during a part in which it’s obvious the music would go on. This is evidence of either the theme being composed for a cut of the scene that was longer and/or different, or it should start earlier. There are some other, more minor audio problems, like a stray bit of “Thus Spoke Zarathustra” remaining over the MGM lion into the newly created fanedit intention card and then abruptly stopping, and a hard cut and volume level difference at the start of the stargate sequence. Also, the Space Station Docking part doesn’t totally fit the flow of the images and ends too soon. Video should have been further adjusted. Yet otherwise, the new music is very well integrated and works fine. 6.5/10.

DIFFERENCE TO THE ORIGINAL: The most obvious is, of course, the score. Which shows, for my tastes at least, that Kubrick did the right thing. I’m no fan of Alex North’s work in general (his best is probably Spartacus, also by Kubrick), and this score is hit (Moon Rocket Bus) and miss (the main theme) for my tastes. However, it’s a very interesting “what if”. Then the movie itself is a bit shortened, and masterfully so, as I didn’t miss anything really. I only noticed the absence of the bathroom instructions, but only because I’m used to that and was expecting it, otherwise the cut is invisible. Additions include the aforementioned Sagan prologue, new footage during the stargate trip (well integrated and looking like it could have always been part of the movie, but I thought those shots were too static for that moment so it detracted more than added), and new effects, but don’t worry, no going Lucas here, apart from those already mentioned CGI screens, they’re subtle. The monolyth flare effect, particularly, is as simple as it is effective. Credits were also partially recreated, unfortunately in a different font than the original ones so they stick out. 8/10.

OVERALL PRESENTATION: This comes in the form of a DVD5 with nice and ellegant animated menus using scenes from the film, a chapter selection menu, and two semi-hidden extra features: a fanedit trailer and a CGI recreation of the space station docking, with North’s music, aptly titled “If Only Stanley Kubrick Was George Lucas”. However, at least when starting playback from the trailer, the video content will play in a loop without ever returning to the menu: trailer, space station CGI extra, movie, trailer again. I suppose this is a glitch. 9/10.

ENTERTAINMENT: Pretty much on level with the original in terms of storytelling and pacing, so if you’re a fan of 2001 you’ll enjoy it, and if you aren’t, apart from having no taste this won’t convert you. This is something every Kubrick and/or 2001 fan will want to watch at least once, but at least in my case I don’t find it too rewatchable and I think I’ll mostly stick to the original. 8/10.

So, overall, I’m getting this APPROVED with a final rating of 8/10, but wishing Theophaneia will go back and replace it with a version 2 that addresses some of the problems I’ve pointed out. Now it’s up to him (her? it?), but from an official faneditor position already!
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