62nd THESSALONIKI INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL
Carte Blanche Roland Vajs: Solaris by Andrei Tarkovsky
The audience of the Thessaloniki Festival had the opportunity to enjoy the masterpiece Solaris (1972) by Andrei Tarkovsky on the big screen, in a screening that took place on Saturday, November 6, at the Pavlos Zannas Hall. As part of the Festival's great tribute to editing, entitled "Cut something: Editing and its secrets", nine leading editors from Greece and all over the world received carte blanche to choose a film they consider iconic for the art of editing or for the development of their own career. Editor Roland Vajs, who has collaborated with directors such as Martin Scorsese, Ang Lee and Michael Moore, chose to present to the audience the unforgettable space epic movie of Andrei Tarkovsky.
Just before the start of the screening, Roland Vajs thanked all Festival people for their hospitality, and then spoke about Andrei Tarkovsky, describing him as one of the most important and pioneering directors in the history of cinema. "Tarkovsky has had a great influence on my work, but also on entire generations of filmmakers. Many elements in Tarkovsky's films stem from his cultural identity. And very often, I feel like I'm intuitively connected to his glance," he said.
Afterwards, Roland Vajs pointed out that Tarkovsky’s work possesses a special strength, endowed with a specific and profound aesthetics, making it very impossible for everyone to duplicate or imitate him. “That element, the consistent aesthetics, is what draws me in his work. I myself, am trying to create a sense of asymmetry or disorganization, struggling to imitate him.
Roland Vajs concluded by pointing out that he has never watched Solaris on the big screen, although he is almost fifty years old, except once, in a private 16mm screening, in a municipal library of New York City. Finally, Vajs commented that you need time to understand a director like Tarkovsky. "That's where his charm lies though: in his complexity," he concluded.
A few words about the film:
The space mission “Solaris” has set up a space station on a planet that seems to mysteriously present some kind of intelligence. After the sudden loss of one of the three scientists from the station, psychologist Kris Kelvin is sent there to replace him. Upon arrival, he finds the station abandoned and the two remaining scientists rather secretive. Soon, the planet will begin playing mind games with him, by bringing right in front of him, in flesh and bone, his wife who died ten years ago. The rational scientific research is bound to admit that the planet has the power to materialize the memories of humans.