David Thompson


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December 21, 2007



Originals vs remakes - I reckon the Sodeburgh/Clooney remake of Solaris is better than the Tarkovsky original. I'm not being philistine against Tarkovsky's slow, meditative film style, which I respect and admire. But the Lem novel is interesting enough to begin with, before Tarkovsky adds his heavy Russian soul into the story. The Sodeburgh film is brain food enough. Sadly it didn't do well at the box office. It isn't space opera, and there are no explosions...



Tarkovsky’s film is gratuitously dull, unforgivably so. It’s an over-praised experiment, deliberately bled of all life. I quite like the Soderbergh version, despite the sweetened ending; at least it had some subtlety and nuance – and some rather lovely music. (The sequence with Kelvin’s ‘first dream’ is gorgeous, with Solaris forming what look like ghostly neurons in response.) Though neither film does justice to the ideas in Lem’s novel.


Oscar Peterson is dead. We'll always treasure you Mr. Peterson, even as we miss you. Y'all can find a lot of Mr. Peterson's works at video.google.com by searching for "Oscar Peterson". Of the dozens I've listened to so far, I'd say start with this, here's the Oscar Peterson trio performing "Goodbye" in 1961:


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