2001: a space legend
The climax 2001: A Space Odyssey has been rated as the most important moment in science fiction history by a panel of illustrious experts.
17:31 14 September 2004
The climax of Stanley Kubrick's widely acclaimed film 2001: A Space Odyssey, in which unhinged artificial intelligence computer HAL finally descends into insanity, has been rated as the most important moment in science fiction history by a panel of illustrious experts.
The crowning glory of the1968 classic was chosen by a panel of sci-fi experts which included Thunderbirds creator Gerry Anderson and, less convincingly, a number of UFO investigators.
The film beat a long list of significant sci-fi moments from the annals of cinematic history.
These included the unequivocally horrific chest-bursting scene from Ridley Scott's Alien, in which legendary British actor John Hurt gets to experience the true meaning of his last name.
The harrowingly graphic scene sees a parasitic organism with acid for blood and steel dentures burrowing its merry way out of the comfort of the incubating nest it has made deep within the nether regions of rescue ship crewmember Kane's vital organs, before making what can only be described as Hollywood's most spectacular entrance through his ribcage to a rousing welcome of blood, sinew and guts.
Other scenes selected from the shortlist of 30 for the Sky One show that went out on Monday included the moment aliens first make contact in Steven Spielberg's Close Encounters of the Third Kind, starring Richard Dreyfuss.
The pivotal revelation in The Empire Strikes Back where Darth Vader informs a seemingly dying Luke Skywalker that he is in fact his father and not his father's murderer also carved out a place on the list.
The selecting panel included Professor Martin Smith, a professor of robotics at the University of Central England, former UFO Magazine head Tony Dodd, SFX magazine editor Dave Golder and movie broadcaster and Empire journalist Kim Newman.