As BabbleOn 5 begins a new year of movie reviews, I thought it would be fitting to review the sci-fi classic 2010: The year we make contact. I watched it on New Year’s Day again and found its message of hope a perfect way to start off the new decade.
2010, a direct sequel to Stanley Kurick’s 2001: A space odyssey, picks up summarizing the events of the previous movie. Made in 1984, the US and Soviet tensions are at an all time high and the world on the brink of nuclear war. A monolith is discovered similar to the one in 2001, however this version is massive and in orbit near Jupiter. The US and Soviets must put aside their differences to launch a joint expedition. Once the crew arrives they board the derelict ship, Discovery, and attempt to solve the mysteries left unsolved nine years earlier.
2010 does a fantastic job setting up the multiple tensions between the US, Soviets, the super computer Hal, and the enigmatic aliens. It’s hard to know who to fear more, the seemingly omnipotent beings or the unsettling calm A.I. Hal 9000. Being less cerebral than it’s predecessor, 2010 balances the art and adventure much better As brilliant as 2001 was, there were still many critics that were turned off by its creative approach to story telling. 2010 appeals to a larger audience for both the left and right-brained sci-fi enthusiast. It’s a slow plodding plot which serves the story line well and there is still enough action to maintain your attention. 2010 has a similar feel as Ridley Scott’s Alien in its gritty and realistic art direction. This is pretty bold considering that in 1984, the world was at all time Star Wars high demanding swash buckler adventures.
What I loved about 2010 is the mystery. While there is resolution, there is still so much unexplained and left to the imagination. It doesn’t try to deliver a typical Hollywood ‘we come in peace’ message where everything ties up in a nice bow. Rather is allows you to dwell on the possibilities of the unknown and hte potential of mankind. 2010 really does capture the spirit of adventure that was characteristic of the space program of that era. It’s something that I feel we have lost today. We don’t look up in the sky anymore which is too bad.
As I mentioned earlier, 2010 ends on a message of hope for the future. Something that we could all use. This movie is not for everyone. It’s slow-paced but worth the wait. I give 2010 a 4 out of 5 Babbles.
If you are interested in other sci-fi movies similiar to 2010, check out Alien, Close Encounters of the Third Kind, Solaris, Moon, and Star Trek the Motion Picture.