A jumbled series of dramatised scenes, dream sequences and newsreel excerpts reveal the memories and present-day experiences of unseen protagonist-narrator Alexei. The traumas of Alexei’s rural childhood and experiences of war are mirrored in his urban adult life. His estranged relations with his ex-wife, Natalia, and son, Ignat, reflect the abandonment he suffered from his own father. A myriad of motifs echo across generations melding dream with reality and the personal with the political. Transcending autobiography, elements drawn from Tarkovsky’s own experiences (and those of his mother and father, who both feature in the film) are implicated within the wider traumatic socio-historical experiences of Soviet Russia from 1930 to 1970.
What is this film about? It is about a Man. No, not the particular man whose voice we hear. It’s a film about you, your father, your . . . Read More