2001: A Space Odyssey is a film about mankind's continual self-overcoming through technological and scientific achievements. Though the film spans millennia, a mysterious black monolith reappears during each of the film's four major parts, at every threshold of mankind's progress: the invention of bone tools, the discovery of evidence for extraterrestrial life, the defeat of man's most advanced tool, the evil HAL 9000 supercomputer, and man's rebirth after overcoming space and time. The film is notable for its revolutionary use of special effects, color, long takes and montage, and sound.
The Odyssey is an epic poem by the Ancient Greek poet Homer telling the story of Odysseus's ten-year long journey to his home, Ithaca, after fighting in the Trojan War. While Odysseus' son, Telemachus and his wife, Penelope, fend of suitors attempting to usurp Odysseus' crown, Odysseus travels around the Mediterranean, swept by storms, struck by sea monsters, punished by gods, seduced by demigods and losing his crew. Finally Odysseus returns to Ithaca and, with the help of his son, slays the suitors and is reunited with Penelope.
A Hope in the Unseen is a biographical account of Cedric Jennings' journey from a childhood as the driven and achievement-oriented son of a drug dealer to an alienated college student at Brown University. Cedric, a young black man, faces repeated challenges to his identity as an intellectual both from his fellow black students and from white academics. He goes through life struggling to believe in the viability of his academic future.