I'm not going to re-review SOLARIS having done so almost a decade ago here at Unseen Films (the review is here) however I will talk about the new restoration and the live score that played at the New York Film Festival. Going to see this film was at the top of my must do at the festival list and it was the first ticket I bought over all the other bigger event films.
I've been watching SOLARIS is differing forms for the better part of 35 years now. I originally saw it at the Cinema Arts Center in Huntington New York, and I've seen it several times since then on VHS, DVD and on the big screen. It's always been a treat for me to go back to the planet and see what new thoughts it kicks up.
This time out there was a new restoration. After seeing it in all sorts of versions I have to say that this is the best version yet. It's a stunner to such a degree that I noticed bits and pieces of the set I hadn't seen before. I was was looking to read what was written on various signs and labels- despite not knowing Russian I had never done that before. I felt I was on the space station and not just watching a movie. Its so good I may actually get a new copy when it hits home video.
The film played with a new live score by Matthew Nolan and Stephen Shannon and it was a magical experience. Its a towering achievement that adds a great deal to the film. While I know purists might squawk at the changes the score made to the film, I think it worked and added an emotional coloring that allowed those of us familiar with the film and the story to look at the themes and ideas fromi a slightly different perspective.
How good is the score I inquired the next day at the press office about plans to screen the film with the new score as well as the ability to get a copy for myself (as of this writing the answers are to be forth coming)
I had a blast at the screening and it was one of the true highlights of the festival
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