A journey through the universe as it would appear to a space traveler beginning at the David Dunlap Observatory on Earth.

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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 2 wins. See more awards »

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Cast

Credited cast:
Donald MacRae ...
Himself (astronomer)
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Storyline

Beginning with a dramatization of the nightly work of an astronomer at the David Dunlap Observatory in Richmond Hill, Ontario, the documentary film shifts to focus on the workings of the universe. A journey to the stars is depicted in animation and takes the viewer to the boundaries of the heavenly bodies: the Moon, Mars, Venus, Mercury, Pluto, to the farthest regions of space beyond the reach of the strongest telescope, past the Sun and the Milky Way into unfathomed galaxies. Written by pr1mal_1

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independent film | See All (1) »

Genres:

Documentary | Short

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Release Date:

May 1960 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Notre univers  »

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1.37 : 1
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Trivia

'Stanley Kubrick' viewed this film and was used as a template for the special effect shots used in his 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968). He used the same panning camera effect for creating his planets. He even hired narrator Douglas Rain to voice the computer HAL. See more »

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User Reviews

 
The Canadian film that spawned all modern science fiction.
23 February 2000 | by (Edmonton, Alberta) – See all my reviews

Universe, a short film made by the infamous B-unit of the Canadian National Film Board in 1960, is one of the best films ever made and one of my favourites. This (under 30 minute) film inspired Kubrick's "2001: A Space Oddyssey", which itself inspired Lucas' "Star Wars", which itself inspired all other science fiction. My earlier reference to the filmmakers (infamous B-unit) is in regards to a group of filmmakers who made a series of instructional documentaries for the Canadian film board. Upon deeper analysis of these films, and particularily Universe, one finds a hidden philosophy which can allude to the meaningless of life and a kind of anti-americanism which is at the core of all the B-unit films.

Universe itself is a breathtaking film with visuals as yet unmatched by today's expensive special effects. The effects in Universe make one feel small and insignificant as if our existence is arbitrary, unimportant, and even vulnerable. We're shown the Universe as a cold void which is indifferent to our cries of "What does it all mean?" However, for those not willing to give this film the analysis which it deserves, Universe can be enjoyed just on the visuals alone which can watched again and again. I've stopped short from giving a detailed description of the plot so that anyone reading this before seeing the film can simply sit down and let the film wash over you. Enjoy!


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