Book review: Geoff Dyer’s Zona
Zona’s stated subject is Stalker, Andrei Tarkovsky’s 1979 masterpiece about three men who journey to a desire-granting room in a forbidden, supernatural landscape called “the zone.” And indeed, Dyer describes the film scene-by-scene—nearly shot-by-shot—annotating his description with quotations culled from the works of Whitman, William James, Slavoj Žižek, and Rilke himself. But Zona’s subject is also, and equally, film itself. And it is also Tarkovsky the man, and the aleatory, uncontrollable process of making art. And of course, it is the eternal subject of any Dyer study: the author’s own cantankerous, improbable existence.
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