January 30, 2015
I've watched Kubrick's "2001" several times over the years. I've always found the director's films chilly, with scant human warmth. As far as this particular editor goes, I've always felt the FE site gives him a free pass. Still, someone (Ebarto? Col Hutty? Ric Olie?) suggested I give this reedit a whirl.
Video - 1280 X 720p AVC. Hate saying this, but this looks better than my DVD. Most of the editing is fine. I have never had many issues with this editor's visual work.
Audio - 160 kbps AAC. 2 channels. No subs. This opened with moments of ambiant droning that Soderbergh is so fond of. I feared he had wiped the soundtrack as he had on Raiders. No. Audio returned to the original track. Dialogue clear.
Narrative - This has been altered. Updated, if you prefer. Much has been cut, some I noticed, some I did not. While streamlined, the pace still plods. Not necessarily in a bad way. This captures the ennui of lengthy isolation of deep space travel. HAL has a stronger role in this, and often seems a witness of pre-dawn man continuing to the star child. Is this edit better? I don't know - it is over sooner so that will be a plus for many.
Enjoyment - Oh, same as before. Whenever this airs at a local theater, I attend. I have a Wow reaction about as often as I walk out annoyed. I applaud Soderbergh's video restoration work on this, as well as ditching redundant or unnecessary sections. I have enjoyed this more any of his other edits.