Andrey Tarkovsky. A Cinema Prayer

By Andrey A. Tarkovsky

Italy, Russian Federation, Sweden | In Russian with English subtitles | 2019 | | 97 min 48 sec | PG (Some Violence)

 

If a society needs spirituality it starts to produce artwork and to generate artists. If it does not need spirituality, a society will make do without art but the number of unhappy people will grow, of spiritually dissatisfied people will increase, humans will lose their purpose and no longer understand why they exist. So in regard to religion, it’s not a personal matter to me. It concerns the fate of culture of our civilisation. 

— Andrey Tarkovsky​

Andrey Tarkovsky. A Cinema Prayer chronicles the sources of inspiration, beliefs and experiences that shaped the practice of one of the greatest directors in the history of cinema, Andrey Tarkovsky (1932–1986). Made by Tarkovsky’s son, the film skilfully splices together rare voice recordings of Tarkovsky, thereby allowing him to tell his own story. 

The film features Tarkovsky’s views on art, on the calling of the artist in contemporary society, and the meaning of human existence. Footage of the director at work accompany excerpts from Mirror (1974), Ivan’s Childhood (1962), Andrey Rublev (1966), Solaris (1972), Stalker (1979) and Nostalghia (1983), revealing how these films were developed and realised. Previously unreleased recordings of poetry written and recited by Tarkovsky’s grandfather Arseny Tarkovsky, a renowned 20th century poet, also demonstrate how each artist is influenced by the previous generation. 

Andrey Tarkovsky. A Cinema Prayer premiered at the Venice International Film Festival (2019).

Andrey A. Tarkovsky (b. 1970, Russia) is a documentary filmmaker and President of the Andrey Tarkovsky International Institute. As the son of renowned Russian filmmaker Andrey Tarkovsky, he has devoted his life and career to the preservation and promotion of his father’s work.

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