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Stalker ( Russian : Сталкер , IPA:  [ˈstaɫkʲɪr] ) is a 1979 Soviet science fiction art film directed by Andrei Tarkovsky with a screenplay written by Boris and Arkady Strugatsky , loosely based on their novel Roadside Picnic (1972). The film combines elements of science fiction with dramatic philosophical and psychological themes. [4]

The meaning of the word "stalk" was derived from its use by the Strugatsky brothers in their novel Roadside Picnic , which alluded to Rudyard Kipling 's character "Stalky" in his Stalky & Co. stories. In Roadside Picnic , "Stalker" was a common nickname for men engaged in the illegal enterprise of prospecting for and smuggling alien artifacts out of the "Zone". The common English definition of the term " stalking " was also cited by Andrei Tarkovsky. [6]

Stalker has been called one of the best drama films of the latter half of the 20th century, and ranks 29th on the British Film Institute 's "50 Greatest Films of All Time" poll. [7]