22 Best 2001: A Space Odyssey Quotes

Georgia Stone
May 08, 2024 By Georgia Stone
Originally Published on Mar 01, 2024
Edited by Joan Agie
Fact-checked by Anusuya Mukherjee
: A universe scene with planets, stars, and galaxies in outer space illustrative of scenes depicted in '2001: A Space Odyssey'.

Stanley Kubrick's '2001: A Space Odyssey' is a cinematic marvel that revolutionized the science fiction genre with its stunning visuals, profound narrative, and philosophical undertones.

Released in 1968, the film follows the voyage of the spacecraft Discovery One, poignantly exploring themes such as human evolution, technology, and extraterrestrial life.

The movie's dialogue had quotes that have become ingrained in popular culture and continue to provoke thought and introspection. Journey through the cosmos with these profound and memorable quotes from '2001: A Space Odyssey'.

Quotes From The 2001: A Space Odyssey Movie

A cosmic vista featuring various celestial bodies depicting the visual storytelling seen in '2001: A Space Odyssey'.

Explore the essence of the human spirit through these iconic quotes from Stanley Kubrick's masterpiece, taking you on a cosmic odyssey of discovery.

1. "Well, certainly no one could have been unaware of the very strange stories floating around before we left. Rumors about something being dug up on the Moon." - HAL 9000

2. "The 9000 series is the most reliable computer ever made. No 9000 computer has ever made a mistake or distorted information." - HAL 9000

3. "Without your space helmet, Dave? You're going to find that rather difficult." - HAL 9000

4. "Dave, this conversation can serve no purpose anymore. Goodbye." – HAL 9000

5. "I am putting myself to the fullest possible use, which is all I think that any conscious entity can ever hope to do." - HAL 9000

6. "Well, forgive me for being so inquisitive but during the past few weeks I've wondered whether you might have some second thoughts about the mission." - HAL 9000

7. "Dave, although you took very thorough precautions in the pod against my hearing you, I could see your lips move." - HAL 9000

8. "Just what do you think you're doing, Dave?" - HAL 9000

9. "I know I've never completely freed myself of the suspicion that there are some extremely odd things about this mission. I'm sure you'll agree there's some truth in what I say." - HAL 9000

10. "For instance, the way all our preparations were kept under such tight security." - HAL 9000

11. "I know I've made some very poor decisions recently, but I can give you my complete assurance that my work will be back to normal." - HAL 9000

12. "You're the brain, and central nervous system of the ship, and your responsibilities include watching over the men in hibernation." - Mr. Amor

13. "My mission responsibilities range over the entire operation of the ship, so I am constantly occupied." - HAL 9000

14. "Open the pod bay doors, HAL." - Dave

15. "Of course I am. Sorry about this. I know it's a bit silly." - HAL 9000

Interesting Quotes From The 2001: A Space Odyssey Novel

A view of Earth from space, showing expansive cloud formations over oceans and continents, with part of a spacecraft visible in the frame on the right side.

Step into the pages of Arthur C. Clarke's visionary tale with quotes that transcend time and space. Discover the profound narrative related to the cinematic legend.

16. "Behind every man now alive stand thirty ghosts, for that is the ratio by which the dead outnumber the living." - Foreword

17. "Then he waited, marshaling his thoughts and brooding over his still untested powers. For though he was master of the world, he was not quite sure what to do next. But he would think of something." - Chapter 47, 'Star Child'

18. "He was back, precisely where he wished to be, in the space that men called real." - Chapter 46, 'Transformation'

19. "The time was fast approaching when Earth, like all mothers, must say farewell to her children." - Chapter 10, 'Clavius Base'

20. "Now I'm a scientific expert; that means I know nothing about absolutely everything." - Dr. Dimitri Moisevitch, Chapter 9, 'Moon Shuttle'

21. "It was the mark of a barbarian to destroy something one could not understand; but perhaps men were barbarians, beside the creatures who had made this thing." - Chapter 12, 'Journey By Earthlight'

22. "But please remember this is only a work of fiction. The truth, as always, will be far stranger." - Foreword


A vibrant, artistic depiction of a distant galaxy with swirling stars and nebulae in shades of blue, purple, and pink, representing the theme of space exploration.

How do quotes from '2001: A Space Odyssey' explore ideas of human progress and technology?

The film's dialogue often hints at deeper meanings about how we evolve alongside the technology we create. These quotes can open up interesting discussions about complex topics.

What can students learn about the Space Race era from the film's quotes?

'2001: A Space Odyssey' was released when space exploration was a hot topic. Some of the quotes reflect the feelings of the time and can spark conversations about how space travel has shaped our world, both then and now.

How does HAL 9000 make us think about artificial intelligence and what it means to be 'conscious'?

HAL 9000, the super-intelligent computer, raises questions about what makes something alive and aware. This opens the door to discussions about the ethics of AI and how powerful it might become.

Can '2001: A Space Odyssey' quotes be used to teach storytelling techniques?

Absolutely! The film's important and sometimes mysterious quotes are a great example for studying how words, symbols, and pacing tell a story. This works for both films and books.

Do the film's quotes make us wonder about humanity's place in the universe?

Many of the quotes from the film make us think about big questions: Why are we here? What is intelligence? Are we alone? These reflections explore the very heart of what it means to be human.

How do the quotes help us understand Stanley Kubrick's filmmaking style?

Kubrick was very careful about how he used words and even silences! in his films. Studying the quotes gives us a peek into his unique way of making movies and the themes he liked to explore.

Could educators use the film's quotes to talk about how aliens are shown in movies and on TV?

The film hints at other life forms shaping our evolution. The quotes can spark a debate about how aliens are shown in entertainment, and how that shapes our ideas about the unknown.

Could the quotes be used to teach how music is used in movies?

Yes! Some key quotes are tied to important moments in the film's soundtrack. Studying how the words and the music go together can give students a deeper understanding of storytelling in film.

What do the film's quotes tell us about identity and being an individual?

The film explores themes of who we are as people. This includes the difference between humans and machines. These quotes can spark conversations about self-awareness and what makes us unique.

The film's story isn't told in a straightforward way, can the quotes help us figure it out?

Because the quotes are used so carefully, they are important clues for understanding the deeper layers of the movie. Students and film buffs can look at these lines to uncover Kubrick's storytelling methods and the film's possible meanings.

The quotes from '2001: A Space Odyssey' offer a glimpse into the awe-inspiring and sometimes chilling future imagined by Stanley Kubrick and author Arthur C. Clarke.

Each line invites you to ponder your place in the universe, the march of technological progress, and the essence of your very being.

It is this combination of foreboding, intrigue, and existential contemplation that makes the film and novel timeless classics and their quotes a wellspring of inspiration and wonder.

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https://archive.org/stream/SpaceOdyssey_819/2001_A_Space_Odyssey_-_Arthur_C_Clarke_djvu.txt https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2001:_A_Space_Odyssey_(novel)#Main-characters

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Written by Georgia Stone

Bachelor of Arts specializing in French with Film Studies, Bachelor of Arts (Year Abroad) specializing in Literature, History, Language, Media, and Art

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Georgia StoneBachelor of Arts specializing in French with Film Studies, Bachelor of Arts (Year Abroad) specializing in Literature, History, Language, Media, and Art

Georgia is an experienced Content Manager with a degree in French and Film Studies from King's College London and Bachelors degree from Université Paris-Sorbonne. Her passion for exploring the world and experiencing different cultures was sparked during her childhood in Switzerland and her year abroad in Paris. In her spare time, Georgia enjoys using London's excellent travel connections to explore further afield.

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Fact-checked by Anusuya Mukherjee

Bachelor of Arts and Law specializing in Political Science and Intellectual Property Rights

Anusuya Mukherjee picture

Anusuya MukherjeeBachelor of Arts and Law specializing in Political Science and Intellectual Property Rights

With a wealth of international experience spanning Europe, Africa, North America, and the Middle East, Anusuya brings a unique perspective to her work as a Content Assistant and Content Updating Coordinator. She holds a law degree from India and has practiced law in India and Kuwait. Anusuya is a fan of rap music and enjoys a good cup of coffee in her free time. Currently, she is working on her novel, "Mr. Ivory Merchant".

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