Tarkovsky

Woebot

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Staff member
<img alt="tark2.jpg" src="http://www.woebot.com/images/dissensus/tark2.jpg" width="479" height="600" border="0" />
 

Diggedy Derek

Stray Dog
Rocking. The only Tarkovsky I didn't think was extraordinary was Sacrifice, which tested my patience just a bit too far, and Solaris, which was slightly ponderous.

Mind you the latter film still gets 9.5/10. The rest of his (actually very small) ouevre gets 10/10.
 

luka

Well-known member
Staff member
i've only watched two. one pissed me right off, the other one was one of the best things i've ever seen. so i'll be going to as many of these as work and wallet permits.
 

luka

Well-known member
Staff member
mirror/stalker
is there one on tonight? i've got the evening off.
 

xero

was minusone
wow, i was still fucked off about missing that free screening of stalker at the national gallery last year, having only seen it on video - must be able to make one of the 44 screenings this time around :D
 

Diggedy Derek

Stray Dog
There's nowt on tonight unfortunately. Yeah Stalker rules, how intense is that film. Saw at the ICA once with a vaguely Miles Davis electric period type band called Sand doing a live soundtrack (actually they only did certain scenes- for perhaps half the overall length of the film they were silent). It was fantastic.
 

michael

Bring out the vacuum
I'm flashing back to watching 'Mirror' on New Year's Eve one year when I didn't want to go partying... That scene where the building is collapsing around the woman washing her hair seemed like the most serious shit ever, and I still have no idea what it means. Is it backwards? I can't recall quite... Meanwhile my gf had fallen asleep across my lap.

Is Tarkovsky's stuff full of intent and symbolic and so on, or more in the Lynch vein of just letting images that feel right dictate the plot and reason can go get fucked? Haha... how's that for a false dichotomy?
 

jenks

thread death
for a neophyte what would you guys recommend? remember it'll have to be on dvd or video? swanning up to london is getting harder to do...
 
O

Omaar

Guest
I'd begin with Solaris. His films sne me to sleep, but in a really good way. A kind of beautiful dreamy boredom. Solaris is the only one I've seen recently, and the only one I can remember anything about. It is pretty awesome.

I remember thinking stalker was amzing when I saw it, but can't remember a whole lot about it now, just a few images. But then, I did see it on a 14" TV :( Started watching The Sacrifice, but didn't get very far at all, it just seemed overly super ponderous. A friend swears it's his best, so I will try and engage with it sometime.

Ivan's childhood wa a lot more conventional if I recall, one scene it I remember in particular where the camera just floats up into the air .. I think? was pretty amazing ... but the narrative etc is much straighter .

I found Andrei Rublev a bit dull, but its playing in Wellington later this year, so I might give it another shot I reckon. Having to see these films on a small TV is just not right.
 

h-crimm

Well-known member
i saw solaris with some old russian scientists with tinted glasses in a hut on the illinois prairie, i think that added to the alien atmosphere.
agree with omaar that movie at least has a really somnolent atmosphere, it feels thick and warm and i associate a soft droning noise with it... maybe thats the film or the summer night or being sat in the control room right now, underground at the particle accelrator where i work.
the idea of the planet which is just ocean and the psycological embrace of the alien and the horrifc and dreamlike island right at the end are all sleepy images for me.
and even tho some bits where he's hanging around in his cabin being seduced are a bit captain kirk or space 1999, it still loved it.

i really wish i was in london to see stalker, that one sounds really incredible.

p.s. he should have done more films with george clooney (= a joke... dont get it twisted)
 
O

Omaar

Guest
That sounds like a fairly awesome environment to have seen Solaris in H-Crimm. Better than a tower block in bermondsey. If you can organise a screening in an undergroud particle accelerator lab, I would be keen.

I just found another reference to sleep and solaris in a review:

"Tarkovsky's 1972 original, based on the novel by Stanislav Lem, is full of the Russian director's trademark extended tracking shots. It is meditative cinema, cinema to be watched half-asleep, cinema that makes you forget yourself and the movie - it just is. "

full article

more ...

"Solaris stays cleanly on the theoretical plane, becoming perhaps a little preachy toward the end, with a few too many authors' messages piping through. There are several allusions to Don Quixote and the Cosmonauts quote Cervantes' poetry on the subject of sleep ... We watch Kelvin sleep for more than a minute in one scene"

link

I didn't find the remake awful, just nothing on the original. That actor who played snow/snout is pretty unbearable in everything, I find.

I would love to see some space 1999 again, i think i saw the final episode on TV when I was pretty young, it was the most surreal thing I had ever encountered at that time. But yeah, it does have a slight feeling of awkward sci-fi, and it seems to owe quite a debt to 2001.
 

LRJP!

(Between Blank & Boring)
Omaar said:
I just found another reference to sleep and solaris in a review:

"Tarkovsky's 1972 original, based on the novel by Stanislav Lem, is full of the Russian director's trademark extended tracking shots. It is meditative cinema, cinema to be watched half-asleep, cinema that makes you forget yourself and the movie - it just is. "

full article

shades of ambient a la Eno, no?
 

xero

was minusone
the sleepy thing rings true, I watched solaris for the first time on a 14" on greek tv whilst lying in bed at about 1am and was bewitched, especially by the soundtrack - I went out the next day and was in this tiny record shop which had mostly tapes & cds and found this new record put out by greece's left-wing radio station with bits from solaris, the mirror & stalker. The sleevenotes mention the ANS synthesiser that artemyev used but I didn't realise until reading about Coilans what a unique thing it is - http://theremin.ru/archive/ans.htm
 

h-crimm

Well-known member
moon base alpha

i'm supposed to be monitoring the data flow from the detector... as dues paying to get on the authour list for the collaboration (i'm no lady soveriegn)
but when everyone else went home and the beam got dumped i sneaked in most of cassavettes shadows the other night... if you're in illinois and if i can get you a security pass your welcome to come for a tour. i need someone to help me take some film in the control room, its like the bridge of a real space ship or more prosaically an oil rig.
its less compatible with the neon new york of shadows than it would be with a bad sci-fi / art-samizdats cross over...

me and a friend at school used to really love the stilted mess of simplistic wonder technolgy and social futurism on space 1999. only saw afew episodes myself but some of it was pure short sighted genius.
its interesting that people who professionally imagined the future to design this kindof thing had no idea about things as seemingly basic as graphical user interfaces for operating systems... there seemed to be a scene everyweek where the communications officer attempted to turn on one of the close circuit teevee cameras on the base and it took her about ten minutes of frantically typing an essay into her console before she could reveal that she couldnt get it to do anything.
 

ambrose

Well-known member
well mirror is my favourite tarkovsky film becasue its his most autobiographical and least structured. I dont think Tarkovsky imbued every shot with meaning, but it was a personal meaning, not didactic. He wanted the audience to do with it what they will, not a sort of "DO YOU SEE" (c. ILX) sort of thing. In his book "sculpting in time" he talks about the shot at the very end of Andrei Rublev as mainly being there to provide visual relief for the audience, after the 3/4 hr marathon, a 10 minute glide of rich colour that is easy on the eys after hours of black and white mud and misery. That sort of thing makes me believe that he really just likes putting stuff up, and seeing what people make of it. When i came out of stalker at the nft the other year, all these people were like, "so what did x mean? and what was going on here and there etc etc". i jsut thought, forget about it, "it" doesnt mean anything, if it doesnt mean anythign to you. I prefer things that dont have an answer or meaning, i think thats why i love tarkovsky. to me his films are just hours of slightly moving paintings, like the weeds moving under the water at the start of solaris
 
Fyi

Tarkovsky season at the Curzon Mayfair is this week. Each film is followed by a q&a with significant people - for The Mirror just now we had his sister. The guy on Stalker revealed that Tarkovsky originally wanted a fox instead of the dog. Ivan's Childhood, Solaris, Nostalgia and The Sacrifice (in a new print) still to come I think.
 

zhao

there are no accidents
for The Mirror just now we had his sister. The guy on Stalker revealed that Tarkovsky originally wanted a fox instead of the dog. Ivan's Childhood, Solaris, Nostalgia and The Sacrifice (in a new print) still to come I think.

i would love to ask someone what the chickens mean in Sacrifice.
 
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