Geoff Dyer talks Stalker.


So much for a carefree Sunday morning — instead I opted to go along to a sold-out screening of Tarkovsky’s Stalker at the Curzon Richmond. Getting a packed house before noon (and on a bank holiday weekend) was quite a feat, partly because of all the tube disruptions delaying most journeys.

Author Geoff Dyer, who introduced the screening, joked: “It is only marginally less difficult to get to Richmond than into the Zone itself.”

Dyer recently wrote Stalker treatise Zona: A Book About a Film About A Journey to a Room, and his passion for the film was infectious — he said “I really believe its one of the great works of art, not just a great film.” And to Sunday morning’s skeptical, sleepy or easily bored, he noted that for Tarkovsky’s usual pacing, Stalker “is actually quite action-packed. There’s a car chase and everything.” [And on a dumbed-down side note, I couldn’t help but noticing how Alexander Kaidanovsky’s shorn head looks rather like Jason’s Statham’s. I smell a remake.]

The screening was presented by A Nos Amours, a new collective bringing lesser-seen films to cinemas. Filmmaker Joanna Hogg, who runs the group with Adam Roberts, said: “We just want to shed a little light on lesser-known films.”

The next (and seventh) A Nos Amours selection will be Jean-Marie Straub and Danièle Huillet’s Chronicle of Anna Magdalena Bach on May 27 at the Lexi in Kensal Rise.