A while back, after seeing West Side Story -- also directed by Robert Wise -- it struck me that it had something in common with TMP. They're both movies that are often driven by lengthy set pieces of imagery and music with no dialogue. Even a lot of the musical numbers in WSS are instrumental for long periods. So maybe Wise was approaching TMP with a similar "musical" sensibility, the mindset that it's okay to stop the story and spend several minutes showcasing beautiful music and visuals. Which, for me, works just fine in TMP.
Agree. I know people who also complain Andromeda Strain
is slow and boring, but I think it works fine.
I love The Andromeda Strain.
It's one of my favorite science fiction films (I like the book, too). The long scenes in Andromeda,
that are likely the ones that bore people, depict the process of systematic investigation, testing, and experimentation, to face and ultimately avert the crisis. It's all part of the story, and those scenes do advance it.
The drydock scene in TMP works for me because that part of the film was for the fans, I think. Really, it was for anyone who could take pleasure in seeing something from the imagination brought so realistically to life (to the state of the art of VFX). I think there is a valid comparison to be made with a dance number. Good call, Christopher
. That could at least arguably apply to a general audience. But for the fans, it was an extra special moment because she'd come back.
After the drydock indulgence, the V'Ger shots get diminishing returns because the point's been made already. They don't contribute to the story, except to say that V'Ger is really big, intricate, and weird. That point could have been made more efficiently.
I'd like to think that had he had more time in post, Wise could have gotten the pace that he wanted in TMP. Another science fiction film to Wise's credit is The Day the Earth Stood Still,