I guess I just like liking things.
A great opening and some effective later scenes, but this is really just the middle of a story. It has no set-up or resolution. At least it looks good and uses sound better than it's predecessor; the cross-cutting scenes in the final act are ambitious but don't quite work, though. If there isn't a Part III, this one will become disposable.
One thought, for a film that inspires as much quiet contemplation as it does critical thinking: While the monastery is clearly Medieval in design, and the monks have a couple still images (of Mary and other saints) in their cells, this environment is nothing like the elaborate luxury of a Gothic or Baroque cathedral. Instead, the dominant aesthetic throughout is one of severity and plainness, with beauty expressed primarily by God's creation rather than Man's. Groning emphasizes this with his…
3rd or 4th viewing. A masterpiece of criticism that illuminates Tarkovsky's oeuvre without explaining it. It allows us to see and feel more deeply, pointing out things we might have missed with great poetic insight, but never claims to have found the key or falls into the trap of definition. "Some deliver sermons. The greats leave us with our freedom."
And I could listen to Alexandra Stewart's voice all day.
Got to see it on the big screen at the IU Cinema. Even with an old print, and a brief breakdown in the middle when the sound went out, still awe-inspiring. I remembered the beginning and end very well, but there were great stretches in the middle that felt almost brand new. I had forgotten what an epic it is--the sheer scope of the battle scenes is just stunning, and magnifies the horror of it all even more.