Tarkovsky’s Stalker playing in my pocket, in my head.

I’m walking about on the mountain slopes up and down with Andrei Tarkovsky’s Stalker (1979) playing on the phone in my pocket.

The film plays in my pocket and my head, snychronised. Scenes run through my head soaked up in the otherworldly atmosphere of the film. Under my feet is uneven and rough soil, but I feel as though I’m walking on grass. Presence, such presence. Of dreams and memories, with reality in their gentle grasp.

. . . . . . . . . . . . .

This reminded me a favourite scenes from the film, so let me share the dialogue from the scene. I love it because of the writing: what is being said and how well it is said, how beautifully. It’s a monologue by Stalker, the film’s protagonist.

Read it entirely, read it slowly, and remember the last line.

Let everything that’s been planned
come true.

Let them believe.

And let them have a laugh
at their passions.

Because what they call passion
actually is not some emotional energy,
but just the friction between
their souls and the outside world.

And most important,
let them believe in themselves
let them be helpless like children,

because weakness is a great thing,
and strength is nothing.

When a man is just born,
he is weak and flexible,
when he dies,
he is hard and insensitive.

When a tree is growing,
it’s tender and pliant,
but when it’s dry and hard,
it dies.

Hardness and strength
are death’s companions.

Pliancy and weakness are
expressions of the freshness of being.

Because what has hardened
will never win.

You can watch it on YouTube here.

August 13, 2022