2001: A Space Odyssey is incredible mess of movie, the writers Stanley Kubrick and Arthur C. Clarke obviously felt that a lot of random uninteresting long scenes make a whole film. It has a plot which doesn't go anywhere: In the opening scene monkeys learn the use of the bone as a weapon, it then suddenly cuts to a man on a spaceship who we follow for about an hour and then disappears totally from the film. However the middle part the film gets more interesting as we follow a different character who is held captive by a crazy machine called HAL, but that story slowly becomes more incomprehensible and uninteresting and we are introduced to the giant space baby. In conclusion, the film goes absolutely nowhere. The film is only worth it for the brilliant special effects (the spaceships look really real, as opposed to nowadays CGI) and the one hour HAL segment.
This film gives the pretence of saying something profound or deep but does not. Just because a film doesn't make sense or we don't understand what is happening, it doesn't make it a classic. All this film does is be pretentious: a giant space baby is shown and we're supposed to be awed and thought provoked, a monolith appears a few times and we're supposed to say "what does mean?" or "I don't understand it must be intelligent!" none of it means anything. There's a difference when a film genuinely has something to say or a message and when it likes to pretend it does, 2001 A Space Odyssey pretends it does with it's long-winded running time that boasts grandiose music and a long tedious scenes yet if you love style over substance or films that have no intelligence yet fool the audience into believing they do (Shawshank Redemption) then this film certainly is for you; yet if you want an intelligent plot- based film avoid this pretentious mess and you'll save 2hrs and half of your life; spend it on a Kubrick film that deserves the praise: "Paths of Glory" "The Killing" "Barry Lyndon" or "Dr Strangelove."