Tarkovsky's Aspects Of The Natural World Of Stalker

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The conception of the ancient struggle of man versus nature has been heavily warped in the modern world. From a contemporary standpoint it is difficult to think passively of the environment. In the light of the impending crisis of global warming and the changes associated with it, it is easy to think of the environment as both a victim and an agent of retribution: the continuously more common occurrences of dramatic weather and toxic surroundings serving as a condemning consequence of humanity’s actions. This was not Tarkovsky’s portrayal of the post-human “natural world” of Stalker. He instead chooses to focus on the continuous renewal of the natural world and the inevitability of it continuation. What he offers instead is an image of hope, …show more content…
The use of music for example, is relatively sparse and unobtrusive. Tarkovsky instead fills the soundscape of the film with atmospheric reflections of the setting. The sounds of the breeze, or the rain, or a rushing river are presented, sometimes in the background, sometimes so loud that it obscures dialogue. In the absence of these sounds, often nothing is added, letting the viewer linger with the peaceful silence of a place now almost absent of humanity. Without human white noise, the viewer is sonically presented with the reality that nature has reclaimed this place. When man-made sound is introduced, it is often used to a disquieting effect. There is scene where the Writer must travel along an abandoned tunnel. As this scene progresses, the sounds of the rain and running water give way to mechanical twangs and the voices of the characters, distorted by the acoustics of the tunnel. The effect here is that the introduction of these sounds are disquieting, indicative that something is amiss. This association can be found all throughout the film. Much of the music of the film contains the use of a synthesizer, and the artificial quality of this element upon the sound of the film …show more content…
As the film starts and we are introduced to the cast, the protagonists appear, if not exactly pristine, at least somewhat put together. During their journey towards the Room however, they become continuously more and more visibly altered by their surroundings. As they trek through the muddy terrain, dirt, water, and refuse begin to cling to their outfits making them appear more and more run down. Similarly, the closer they get to their destination, the more emotionally frenzied their performance. The Writer, who had up to the point of arrival been a primarily stressed, and displeased character finds some level of calm. He comes to his epiphany about Porcupine, and how it is against the nature of the Room to be able to be used with ill intentions. By contrast, both the Professor and the Stalker shift from a more calm emotional state to one of great psychological drama. The previously reserved Professor is now frenziedly fighting to destroy the Room, and the hitherto in control Stalker is reduced to begging for the preservation of this space, placing himself at the mercy of another. It is as if their journey into this uninhabited place has changed not only their appearance but also their own self-conceptions. The final proof of this can perhaps be found with the black dog that comes across them in the Zone that the Stalker

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