Solaris (1972)





Hey there, remember me? It's Kelby McFurryballs, formerly an (unpaid) Intern at MMT. I'm the smart, intelligent, and hot one, if you recall, vastly more attractive than those walking hairballs Jonesy and Nibbles. Don't question this. After Boss Nate closed up shop on us last summer and tossed us out into the cold harsh world on our own, I've been busy traveling (on his credit card) and spreading my...shall we say, love, throughout the most fashionable of brothels of Europe. I took a lot of pictures, of course, but Tumblr deleted my account for ToS violations again so I can't prove any of it, but it's all true, I assure you.


It was all good-times and barebacking until just recently when, while visiting the fine ladies of a skankier region of Russia, I fell into some manner of difficulty with the local government. It might possibly have something to do with me stabbing a tranny hooker in a bar after she gimped me on some hash, though in my defense, I was simply and lovingly reaching for my Bible to read the young lady some relevant Scriptures when I might have possibly stabbed her. Several times. And in what, as I am sure you will agree, is a most amazing coincidence, she might have maybe been an undercover federal police officer. Such a comical misunderstanding, no? I have to laugh hahahahahahahahahahahabut no seriously, I'm in some serious shit here. They took my passport and they keep talking about sending me to Moscow for trial, you all don't know what a hellhole Russia is. Don't believe the news, most of this country is like inbred West Virginia, do you know they still have the gulags? Fuck. I tried really, really hard to get someone to Western Union me some money so I could bribe a guy to let me get on a train out of here, but none of you shitgibbons even replied to my emails. Well, that's not true, Nibbles did send me back a Keyboard Cat meme and an expired coupon for a free STD test. Fuck you all, now I'm going to rot in here until I die, I hope you're happy.


I'm too pretty for this prison life, my fur's all matty and my shit's all runny, I'm falling apart here! The only thing that has been keeping me sane is the prison library, you know they have a weirdly eclectic collection of old movies? Huh. So I thought that maybe I should write something about movies, just like old times, you know, just to pass the time between forced tattoos from Vasiliy and (sorta) forced anal probes from Leonid... Luckily the prison library also has a computer with internet access, even if I have to share it with 65 other dudes, most of them looking up farm animal porn.


While perusing the shelves for a suitable movie, Oleg, one of the 27 squatting crooks who share my 10x15 cell, sidled up to me and offered me some of his "homemade vodka", which I have on good authority is made of 2% rubbing alcohol, 85% his own urine, and 13% a special mystery substance which he only seems to be able to produce after watching Russian farm animal porn. It's actually pretty good, better than Henney, no matter what Tu Pac might say. Anyway, Oleg asked me if I had ever seen Solaris. The one Nate reviewed a hundred years ago, I ask, about the rollerbladers, Solarbabies? No? I honestly had no idea that there was a movie called Solaris, made in hillbilly Russia 45 years ago. What the shit? Nate never mentioned that, he was a terrible boss. Criterion blu-ray, says Oleg, top quality, English subtitles even, from his own personal stash. The catch? I had to do a...(sigh) private live interpretative performance of Oleg's favorite cinematic opus, Comrade Pasha and the Very Horny Sheep, in his corner of the cell one night. Ugh. Honestly, though, even that was better than Henney.


Ok, let's get this over with, Oleg keeps looking at me and it's making me nervous as shit. Let me just boot it up on this ancient old-ass Brezhnev-era computer and let's go! Solaris, everyone, yay. 166 minute runtime??? Fuck, that's like 38 hours long. I'm really regretting my decision, and most of the decisions I've made in my entire life.


Ok, this is a bad sign, guys just talking and rearranging their bad wigs. I think Nate bought a used Toyota from this guy. Is this our movie's hero? Really?


Is this how you open a movie? 29 straight hours of talking? Had not anyone in Russia ever seen a James Bond flick on the sly? You always open with a bang, some boobs, maybe a car chase. You don't have some old guys stand around and talk about dumb stuff that only they and their agents care about.


I know they are saying important stuff but I don't want to read subtitles. I do like how everyone in "the future" dresses like your dad doing Wilfred Brimley cosplay. I suppose it's better than everyone in silver foil suits or some shit like you see in Italian Sci-Fi from the same time. It's almost 2019, where are my tinfoil sheet pants?


So boring, even with the occasional color palette switch. You know, 1972 was just a few years after Star Trek, right? Even if Kirk and Spock did talk about their feelz for a bit, it was only for five minutes tops before something exploded or Kirk took his shirt off and punched a Klingon in the dick. I'm not sure what the demographic of Solaris was supposed to be, maybe really old-as-fuck dudes in nursing homes? Better just stand here in frame and talk for 20 straight scenes, wouldn't want to give anyone in the audience a heart attack.


Finally in space now! 44 damn minutes balls-deep into an alleged "science fiction movie" we get our first actual space scene. Seems there's a research station orbiting some distant planet with spooky water monsters or something. I don't care.


So our protagonist dude seems to be visiting this space station on an official mission to find out why everyone has gone batshit crazy lately. Hope he brought along a Communist Party commissioner, I'd hate to think these Russian scientists have been watching illicit television and listening to rock and roll. Seriously, though, I'm impressed by the total lack of pro-Communist propaganda so far, very progressive for the 1970s.


Oh that looks nice. I will say that a lot of Soviet-era Sci-Fi were rocking fantastic sets, they surely put their rubles right up there on the screen. You rarely get the feeling that they are just filming inside a sewage wastewater plant in Hackensack and just calling it a "spaceship interior" like you see in a lot of Western Sci-Fi of the same era. That's some top-notch set dressing right there, love the feel of it.


I would totally live on this space station, look at those comfy chairs, I bet they spin around and shit. A bit spartan, even for my tastes, but I kinda dig that retro-futuristic utilitarian vibe. And yes, I care more about the furniture than the actual plot of the movie, that should tell you something.


God, more talking? This is why Washington and Reagan led an army of Cyber-Velociraptors into Moscow in 1989 and liberated the commies. Hellyeah 'Murica!


I'd look that up but Wikipedia is blocked in Russia because Putin is a pansy. I will say, however, that under Putin the Russian movie industry has indeed put out some amazingly cheesy Sci-Fi. Guardians makes my cold, furry, dead heart warm up a bit.


Ok, what's happening in the movie now? More talking and navel-watching while staring deeply into the middle distance? Really? We get it by now, the alien lifeforms on the planet are using their thoughts against them, creating physical manifestations of their internal fears and dreams. Can't you just show that instead of just talking about it for 45 minutes? Do we need to watch a mid-season ST: Next Gen episode all day long?


Why are you non-cat people so obsessed with the human nature and esoteric philosophical stuff anyway? Why does everything have to have an explanation, what's wrong with uncertainty and unsolvable mysteries? Who cares if alien water monsters are making you see visions of your dead wife and maybe possibly driving you insane? Why can't you just find a nice sunny patch in front of a window and take a 10 hour nap?


Or hit some weed, forget about aliens and dead wives for a bit. Jonesy is into a lot of weed lately, I have to say, things haven't been going too well for him since Nate canceled MMT's Internship program. Heard he's been really getting into Norwegian death metal music and writing a lot of goth poetry on his livejournal page. He's even announced that he's changed his name from Jonesy to Drakkar Noir, though I don't think anyone really listens to him anymore. He's going to lose his cashier job at Walmart if he keeps it up, that's for sure. Nibbles, though, Nibbles is doing just fine, that pompus asshole. I hear he's teaching a couple classes at Sarah Lawrence this semester and he and his fiance just opened an artisanal mayonnaise bodega down in Bushwick. God, can you be any more of a elitist douchebag, Nibbles?


Anyway, back to the mo...Whoa whoa hold up, I just got an email, let me minimize this crap...hey, it's my ex-girfriend Candi! She and the other third-shift strippers down at the Drunken Bunny Lounge in Paducah, Kentucky chipped in and sent me $28.13. Aww, that's sweet of them. Not enough to bribe me into a train ticket, obviously, but maybe enough to at least get me outside the wire. Gotta go, suckers! Hey, maybe I should take Oleg with me? I've grown fond of him and his vodka smoothies.

The End.

Written in December 2018 by Kelby McFurryballs.



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