January 1, 2001

The Long Arm of the Future
Kenneth Auchincloss

Remember the Star-Child? The Star-Child was a mysterious interplanetary fetus that floated portentously toward Earth in the closing scene of Stanley Kubrick’s great 1968 science-fiction film, “2001: A Space Odyssey.” He seemed to signify that a new stage in human evolution—or enlightenment or something —was about to begin. Well, here we are in 2001, or on the verge of it. What can we look forward to in the year ahead?


Enough of this sobersided stuff—2001 will also be a time to have some fun. Any year that brings to the screen both the first book of “The Lord of the Rings” trilogy and the first book of the Harry Potter series deserves some bells and whistles. Salman Rushdie, now quasi-defatwaed, will be out with another novel. Interactive computer games, newly accessible on the Internet, will blossom on your PC. Exotic tours will offer to whisk you to strange corners of the globe: the lemur-filled forests of Madagascar, the penguin colonies of South Georgia Island, the butterfly ballots of Florida’s Palm Beach County. And, we may be sure, there will be a major revival, with color-enhanced and missing scenes restored, of Stanley Kubrick’s “2001.”

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