Solaris

1972, Viacheslav Tarasov

Andrei Tarkovsky's much-lauded Russian film is challenging on many levels; its jarring, non-linear style often imparts the feel of an avant-garde or experimental work. But the patient, persistent film student will be rewarded by its surprisingly deep, complex, albeit depressing messages. This is a window into a different universe through the eyes of a different filmmaker from a different culture that's definitely an acquired taste. Curiously, it's often cited as one of the greatest films ever made... sorry, I don't see it.

     

 

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Solaris

2002, Lightstorm Entertainment

In the process of adapting Solaris to modern, American tastes, Steven Soderbergh presented something structurally similar yet emotionally impotent. Critics argued that it was a poor remake of Tarkovsky's film, unaware of the fact that Soderbergh never even saw it; he was instead adapting the original novel by Stanisław Lem. Although it doesn't leave a lasting impression, as its predecessor had, it does benefit from the appeal of George Clooney and Natascha McElhone, as well as modern production techniques, at least superficially. It is what it is.

   

   

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