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Upon arrival at the space station orbiting an ocean world called Solaris a psychologist discovers that the commander of an expedition to the planet has died mysteriously. Other strange events soon start happening as well, such as the appearance of old acquaintances of the crew, including some who are dead.
An alien of unknowable intention, indefensible power, and indefinable reach. An invasion story without a single Stan Winston creature, annihilated city-center, or large-caliber gun. I'd happily place Lem's tale up there with Odyssey and Alien as top-tier sci-fi stories, without even having read the source material and based only on the adaptations. Solaris is one of the few examples of truly 'alien' aliens I can think of, and as stated previously, any depiction of intelligent life which eschews an anthropic bias is more than OK as a jumping off point in my book.
Tale of the tape, at least for me - Clooney does space madness better than Banionis, Soderbergh's efficiency and visuals make his take more palatable for spur-of-the-moment…
More so Soderbergh's personal and postmillennial answer to Solyaris than a remake of it. He's the only director I ever would have wanted for this; same goes for Martinez in terms of composers (his score here is one of his best). And Jeremy Davies, man, what a performance.
I don't really know if I should call this a remake from Andrei Tarkovsky's Solaris (1972), or just another adaptation from Stanislaw Lem's acclaimed novel, so I am just going to call it a remake to simplify my writing. What I am going to do will be more a comparison between the two Solaris (Tarkovky's and Soderbergh's) than a review over the 2002 film. The plot of this movie may already be well known among moviegoers, but I'll still expose it. A psychiatrist is called to a space station orbiting an oceanic world called Solaris, and is surprised by the death of the expedition's commander. As other events begin to occur they start suspecting that the cause of these events…
"We don't have to think like that anymore.
We're together now.
Everything we've done is forgiven.
Soderbergh's vision of the novel is less of a remake of Tarkovsky's film, but more so a different interpretation and depiction.
It doesn't necessarily cover any huge ground, but it's a small film that tells something much bigger.
It's understated and beautiful; one of the most cerebral films that Hollywood has produced.
It's harder to access at times, and some may call it incoherent, but I absolutely loved its visuals and acting.
It had a much bigger emotional punch than I'd expect, with equal themes and meanings that made me think.
The ending is left ambiguous, and it gives us more questions than…
With a much faster pace, only half the original's runtime, and released 30 years apart, Steven Soderbergh's Solaris is just as excellent as Andrei Tarkovsky's Solyaris. Or dare I say, the remake is actually an improvement.
That's what I think, at least. Just hear me out.
Solyaris is a great, great film, notice I used great twice because that's just how great the film is. But I won't go as far as to say that the film is impossible to be duplicated. There is a flaw, and that would be its unusually slow pace. Now I'm not complaining, I enjoyed every minute of it. (though my mind did wander off a bit during the car scene) It's just that, if…
"There are no answers, only choices." ~ Gibarian
Director Steven Soderbergh would insist that this NOT a remake of Andrei Tarkovsky's 1972 Russian version of "Solaris." Instead, it is a new adaptation of the original 1961 book by Polish novelist Stanislaw Lem, upon which both films are based. I think I have to agree with that interpretation. Apart from the updating of the language, social norms and special effects, this telling emphasizes some very different themes, but it still misses the point that Lem wanted to drive home in his writing about the moral dilemmas raised by "first contact" with non-Earthly sentience. In fact, I think Tarkovsky did a better job in that regard, even if Lem might not agree.…
Disclaimer: I haven't read the book or seen the original.
Doesn't give ample explanation or time to the interesting ideas it proposes, and narratively it fails as well. But I still love you, Natasha McElhone.
I haven't read the source novel so my only comparison is to Tarkovsky's film, but after seeing both of these movies I imagine they're both very close adaptations of the book. This is the same story told for a different time. Both Tarkovsky and Soderbergh lent their own cinematic styles to the story, but seem to have left it mostly unchanged in doing so.
I can’t imagine Stanislaw Lem would have enjoyed this adaptation of his novel any more than he did the previous one. Because Soderbergh does just what the writer was warning against in his book – he anthropomorphizes the great unknowable. He distills expansive ideas into their simplest terms; he holds our hands and gives easy clarity to motivation. Take Gordon (Sartorius in the book) she flat out states what she’s about from the start. We are never allowed to discover this on our own, we are told... end of story. Another example is had later in the picture when Chris spells out exactly why he needs Rheya (which was foreshadowed in the numerous flashbacks). It’s clean dime-store psychology, offers no…
I really liked it. Don't think I understand it fully but I'm really excited to rewatch it and explore it's ideas more which is the hallmark of a great movie. It dangerously walked the line of characters not explaining enough in the beginning which was annoying but it moved past that pretty quickly. After that I enjoyed the ambiguity and liked the ending.
Brilliant movie! Need to watch the Tarkovsky version and compare.
Ok so I had to rewatch this to be sure that my preference over Tarkovsky's adaptation wasn't a thing of nostalgia (having seen it when it came out).
And although I found it simplistic and more formulaic (conforming to Hollywood's norm as it is) it has still more of an emotional backbone and a superb photography that make it, at least for me, the more enjoyable of the two.
"Can you tell me what's happening here?"
"I could tell you what's happening, but I don't know if it would really tell you what's happening."
"We don't want other worlds; we want mirrors."
Apologies in advance, but I think I liked Steven Soderhberg's version of Solaris even more than Tarkovsky's acclaimed original (not saying it's better), despite a very divisive initial reception. It's frequently called slow-paced and yeah, it is, but compared to Tarkovsky's 160+ minute epic this lean 95 minute film feels as exhilarating as Fury Road. Of course, it's just as powerful, mesmerising and enigmatic as Solaryis, and likewise it looks a million bucks.
This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.
Loved it. I wonder why I never heard of it before! Now I gotta read the book.
I could certainly relate to the bleak existence of widowerhood that George is going through. And like I often think, if there were proof that there was a heaven and my Mike was there waiting, I would go in a blink of an eye. (after finding homes for the pets that is) So, I was glad he chose to go with the wife-creature rather than go back to earth and resume his empty life of going through the motions. Also, why is it raining ALL THE TIME?
Beautiful cinematography and sound design.
Although space-beds don't look very comfy or inviting. Nor did George's wet-look pjs. Loved the space station though.
The dvd commentary is great by SS and JC, so interesting.
Movies that embrace an 80's-ish tone with synth or Vaporwave soundtracks or a neon aesthetic.
Suggestions are welcome of course.
Films where their style fills the screen so absolutely, substance is but an afterthought.
Only added some that I've seen,…