Chris’s review published on Letterboxd:
- Fulfillment is a myth. Even if we get our absolute deepest desire, we may not even really want it. Or there may be something we need more, but wants and needs aren't the same thing. Each one of us are infinitely complex, moreso than even we can understand. We can't really know ourselves, and we can't begin to know each other. But if life is this constant, perilous journey through something we can't fully understand with people we can't fully know in search of a fulfillment we'll never find, why even try? Why bother? What presses us on?
Because it's all we have.
Because there is real beauty in it. Real, transcendent beauty.
Because it's worth trying. Worth fighting for.
Because you never know. Something may come along. Something wonderful may happen.
Through meditative filmmaking comprised of patient editing, stunning cinematography (w/r/t color, movement, effects, and the portrayal of landscapes), and largely restrained performances (that still capture things like fear and contempt and anguish), Tarkovsky creates a world that descends into an evocative alien landscape, and an existential narrative that manages to be surprisingly tense and compelling despite the slow pace and largely dry tone. Intellectually accomplished and emotionally realized. The star to steer by!
And hey, can I just say? This movie? Blows Mirror out of the fucking water.