'Contemporary Art Is Devoid of a Spiritual Basis5
An Interview with Andrei Tarkovsky
Question : Andrei Arsenyevich, there is a tendency or a logic, shall we say, by which earlier works become dated for the author. Only his most recent work appeals to him. Taking that into consideration, which of your films do you like most ?
Tarkovsky : You know, normally I never see my films after their release. The only time I get to see them is when a screening takes place which one has to attend. But that happens very rarely ... so much so that I don't 'remember' my earlier films.
However, Solans was never my favourite—even when I'd just completed shooting it. According to my concept of film as a genre, perhaps Nostalgia, my latest film, is my favourite. Firstly, because so far, it is my only film where the scenario itself is of no importance. Even in Mirror, a very unevenly composed film. apart from the chronology of a man's life (certainly a rather strong determinant for conceiving form) there was no single subject matter. Despite this, the scenario played a greater role in it than in Nostalgia. In Nostalgia the subject means practically nothing. After all, nothing happens right up to the epilogue when both the protagonists die. This was totally unexpected, both for the audience as well as for the laws of drama. That is why there is no point in saying thai Nostalgia has been composed along a well-defined structured plane. In Nostalgia the element of dramaturgy is necessary in the same way as a frame is to a sculptor for his modelling. It is required to hold everything together and make it acquire a form.
Journal of Arts & Ideas 51 *The interview appeared in Ruwkava mysl, Paris, 10 January 1985.