Tarkovsky Week: A Journey Down the Isle of Classic Russian Cinema

There have been three truly great Russian filmmakers. The first was Sergei Eisenstein, whose 1925 film The Battleship Potemkin became one of the most influential and important movies of all time. The third was Aleksandr Sokurov, whose movies such as Russian Ark, Father and Son, and last year’s film festival hit Faust. But the one I want to focus on is the second one, I suppose you could say the quintessential great Russian filmmaker. His name is Andrei Tarkovsky, and between 1962 and 1986 he directed only seven films before he succumbed to cancer while staying in Paris after shooting his final movie, The Sacrifice, in Sweden on the same island that Ingmar Bergman lived.

Since I have access to DVDs of all Tarkovsky’s movies (except for The Sacrifice, sadly), I’ll be rewatching the ones I’ve already seen as well as watching two new ones that I haven’t seen. And, I’ll be reviewing every single film right here at Southern Vision. The ones I have seen are Ivan’s Childhood, Andrei Rublev, Solaris and Stalker. The two that I haven’t seen are The Mirror and Nostalgia. The DVD of Nostalgia is currently unavailable but hopefully it should become available in a week’s time. If not, I’ll have to postpone my review of that film.

Why Tarkovsky, you might be asking? Why not? He is a great director that I admire and cherish, and I haven’t seen any of his movies in a while. So in the meantime, as I get this big marathon underway, tell me, what’s your favourite Tarkovsky movie? If you haven’t seen any, then be sure to stick around and read the reviews. You might just come across a film that really interests you.

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Posted on January 6, 2012, in Filmmakers, Movies and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink. 12 Comments.

  1. Christian Hallbeck

    I think that “Andrei Rublev”, “Solaris” and “Stalker” are his best films. “Ivan’s Childhood” is the one I like the least. “Nostalghia” is the film that I’ve watched most frequently (there is a cut two seconds long in this film that i regard to be the most moving cut I know in any film) . “The Sacrifice” was the first film by Tarkovsky that I saw. This said, I have’t seen a Tarkovsky film for many years. I liked him better in my mid 20’s. The film that I value the most today is “Solaris”. The levitation scene is among the most moving and beautiful things that you can ever see…

  2. Tarkovsky has been possibly my happiest rediscovery of the last couple of years. I get him now in a way that I never did before.

  3. I love Tarkovsky, so I’m looking forward to this. The only one I havent seen yet is Sacrifice, but I also plan on doing a Russian film series including the other names you mentioned later in the year.

  4. Brilliant. I do love to learn stuff, and you my old mucka bring me learning in spades!!

    I am looking forward to this week for sure!

    • It won’t really be a ‘week.’ It will just be a series of reviews integrated between normal posts over the course of the next 7-14 days. But I’m sure you will learn heaps. The SOLARIS review should be up on Monday.

  5. He’s one of those directors I like more and more the more time I think about his films. I’ve watched four of his films and while I wouldn’t say I love any of them, I want to watch them all again at some point.

    • I’ve only seen four as well (Ivan’s Childhood, Andrei Rublev, Stalker and Solaris) but I’m going to be tackling the other three I haven’t seen (The Mirror, Nostalgia and The Sacrifice – the latter of which I just found a copy of at the last minute) as well as revisiting those first four over the course of the next week. It’s gonna be great.

  1. Pingback: Tarkovsky Marathon #1: Solaris (1972) [10/10] « Southern Vision

  2. Pingback: Tarkovsky Marathon #2: Ivan’s Childhood (1962) [7/10] « Southern Vision

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