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442 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Superstar George Clooney turns in a stellar performance in this "brilliant sci-fi movie" (New York Daily News) from Academy Award winners Steven Soderbergh (2000 - Best Director, Traffic) and JamesCameron (1997 - Best Picture, Titanic). Aboard a lonely space station orbiting a mysterious planet, terrified crew members are experiencing a host of strange phenomena, including eerie visitors who seem all too human. And when psychologist Chris Kelvin (Clooney) arrives to investigate, he confronts a power beyond imagining that could hold the key to mankind's deepest dreams?or darkest nightmares. Co-starring Natascha McElhone and Jeremy Davies, Solaris is "mind-bending!" (Rolling Stone)

Special Features

  • Steven Soderbergh's "Making of Solaris Special"
  • HBO making-of special
  • Stills of screenplay

Product Details

  • Actors: George Clooney, Natascha McElhone, Ulrich Tukur, Viola Davis, Jeremy Davies
  • Directors: Steven Soderbergh
  • Writers: Steven Soderbergh, Stanislaw Lem
  • Producers: Charles V. Bender, Gregory Jacobs, James Cameron, Jon Landau, Michael Polaire
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Anamorphic, Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, Dubbed, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround), English (Dolby Digital 5.1), French (Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround), Spanish (Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround)
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish
  • Dubbed: Spanish
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: PG-13 (Parental Guidance Suggested)
  • Studio: 20th Century Fox
  • DVD Release Date: July 29, 2003
  • Run Time: 99 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (442 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00009ATIX
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #30,039 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Solaris" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

157 of 168 people found the following review helpful By Matthew Wall on November 14, 2004
Format: DVD
This review refers to the DVD release of Solaris, the remake. Just a couple of notes from the outset:

(1) This film will not be well-liked by most people. There are a ton of spoilers in most reviews, so I'll try to boil it down for its essence to avoid ruining the unfolding of the movie should you choose to see it: a guy goes to a spaceship where weird things are happening and sees his dead wife. Maybe. That's all you need to know about the plot. The movie, some might think is slow, there's no action, it's a head-tripper, and honestly, had I not read the book before and also seen the magnificent Tarkovsky original, I might not have followed what was going on. As such, while I really enjoyed it, I can't call it either a great film nor one that is likely to appeal to a broad cross-section of movie watchers. There are some heady issues surrounding reality, consciousness, life and death, and if you take them too seriously you'll find yourself snoozing.

It's definitely in Soderbergh's style, and it's been fun watching him skip between genres in recent years, but it's more like "The Limey" and less like "Erin Brockovich" if you want to pin it down. While it's not an indy flick -- in the sense it's expensive and bankrolled and produced in Hollywood fashion -- it feels like a small art film or an indy. And please, god, don't expect "Aliens" or "Titanic" because James Cameron's name is over the credits as Producer.

(2) Both the original book and the Tarkovsky film have much to recommend them, although they also share characteristics of being verbally philosophical and talky which this version most assuredly does not. This version is incredibly tight.

(3) If you're a film student or into the mechanics of film, though, this DVD edition is an utter delight.
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107 of 114 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 11, 2004
Format: DVD
Solaris" tells the story of a planet that reads minds, and obliges its visitors by devising and providing people they have lost, and miss. The Catch-22 is that the planet knows no more than its visitors know about these absent people. As the film opens, two astronauts have died in a space station circling the planet, and the survivors have sent back alarming messages. A psychiatrist named Chris Kelvin (George Clooney) is sent to the station, and when he awakens after his first night on board, his wife, Rheya (Natascha McElhone), is in bed with him. Some time earlier on earth, she had committed suicide.
"She's not human," Kelvin is warned by Dr. Helen Gordon (Viola Davis), one of the surviving crew members. Kelvin knows this materialization cannot be his wife, yet is confronted with a person who seems palpably real, shares memories with him and is flesh and blood. The other survivor, the goofy Snow (Jeremy Davies), asks, "I wonder if they can get pregnant?"
This story originated with a Polish novel by Stanislaw Lem that is considered one of the major adornments of science fiction. It was made into a 1972 movie of the same name by the Russian master Andrei Tarkovsky. Now Steven Soderbergh has retold it in the kind of smart film that has people arguing about it on their way out of the theater.
The movie needs science fiction to supply the planet and the space station, which furnish the premise and concentrate the action, but it is essentially a psychological drama. When Kelvin arrives on the space station, he finds the survivors seriously spooked. Soderbergh directs Jeremy Davies to escalate his usual style of tics and stutters, to the point where a word can hardly be uttered without his hands waving to evoke it from the air.
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123 of 141 people found the following review helpful By Roland E. Zwick on December 8, 2002
Since nobody had the wherewithal or wisdom to re-release "2001" in the actual year 2001, a remake of Andrei Tarkovsky's comparable "Solaris" in 2002 would seem the next best thing. Like those two earlier films, Steven Soderbergh's latest work is something of an "art" science fiction film, far more concerned with philosophy and theme than with action and suspense. This may make the film a tough slog for modern day audiences who have been conditioned to be jolted out of their seats every five minutes while watching films of this genre. But for the deeper thinkers among us, "Solaris" offers a fairly intriguing sci-fi vision of the afterlife, a sort of new religious paradigm for the twenty-first century.
George Clooney stars as Chris Kelvin, a successful psychiatrist whose mentally ill wife - ironically enough, given his profession - killed herself a few years back. Chris is commissioned to travel to a space station orbiting the planet Solaris after strange things begin happening to the crew aboard the ship. It turns out that dead loved ones have started appearing to the people there, leading a number of the crewmembers to descend into madness and, in the worst cases, even commit suicide. It's not long before Chris' own dead wife, Rheya, arrives on the scene, prompting him to question whether she is real, a replica created for an unknown reason by the forces of the mysterious planet, or merely a figment of his own troubled conscience and imagination. The film taps into that desire we all have of somehow being miraculously reunited with a deceased love one. We can't help but be moved by Chris' intense desire to believe that all that is happening is real and that life with this person could indeed start back up where it left off.
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