2001 starts at the dawn of man and jumps to 2001, when man as a species is ready to evolve into Homo superior.
No, it's not a junior high school insult. (That's "Homo so-queer-ia.")
Never again would science fiction films -- even good science fiction films like Close Encounters of the Third Kind, Blade Runner and Total Recall -- come close to having that kind of impact. Kubrick inspired Spielberg and Lucas to become filmmakers, to explore space in art, and yet, despite the massive successes of their careers, none stand on the same plane as 2001. It is science fiction as science and art and philosophy. Here are the only 10 minutes I don't like, but people who get super high all the time assure me it's awesome:
Although it's fun to write about Stanley Kubrick as a batshit mad genius terrorizing actors on a whim, it's important to remember that this is a man who had the intellectual capacity to have deep science-based brainstorming meetings with co-collaborator Arthur C. Clarke -- one of the giants of science fiction. Name a director working today who has that kind of analytical stamina.