Auteur List: Ingmar Bergman - Discussion and Defenses

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movielocke
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Re: Auteur List: Ingmar Bergman - Discussion and Defenses

#51 Post by movielocke » Wed Apr 05, 2017 1:12 am

oh it's probably about fifth right now, so it will definitely make my list.

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Re: Auteur List: Ingmar Bergman - Discussion and Defenses

#52 Post by Rayon Vert » Wed Apr 05, 2017 9:52 am

movielocke wrote:But it isn't quite another Bergman masterpiece for me simply because I have trouble with the central plothole of the film: Karin being allowed to travel without an escort. Of course she has Ingiri, but throughout the film my mind kept circling back to this bizarre decision.
I didn't find the decision bizarre because in the film the characters mention, if I'm remembering correctly, that this is something she has previously done, i.e. is a somewhat habitual thing. It's only the mother who's worrying because of her dreams.

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Re: Auteur List: Ingmar Bergman - Discussion and Defenses

#53 Post by TMDaines » Wed Apr 05, 2017 11:30 am

Any reason why the TV features/plays are not eligible for the main list?

I'd particularly hate to see this approach with Fassbinder for one.

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Re: Auteur List: Ingmar Bergman - Discussion and Defenses

#54 Post by movielocke » Thu Apr 06, 2017 4:05 am

Sawdust and Tinsel is a nice little film, and opens with a twenty minute long "flashback" story of the bear tamer woman bathing in the nude with a contingent of soldiers and her clown husband's humiliation at this. The thing I found most interesting about the entire film was how blown out and over-exposed the image was for the flashbacks to this story. It's a very interesting technique/treatment to visually offset the flashback, and it is every bit as effective as the common color treatment effects for flashbacks we are all familiar with from modern film and television. Nicely done.

The story itself is surprisingly simple, and I find myself liking it more as I ponder and plumb it's construction. In a sense, the flashback that opens the film sets the thematic stage for the three male-female relationships we see, each with their own degrees of humiliation and pain inflicted by each side of each couple. Albert and Anne, of course, are central, the lovers heading the carnival. But Albert is married to Agda, who has left the carnival with their children and established herself a tobacco shop in the town the carnival has arrived in, and in reaction to Agda, Anne pairs up with Frans as both Albert and Anne in parallel, ponder leaving the carnival, a prospect both of them find as alluring.

This is just on a person to person level of humiliation and rejection, there are also three major pieces of social rejection of the entire social group throughout the film when the carnies are "put in their place" by the class system; the soldiers in the opening flashback, the local police, and Sjuberg the arrogant, sarcastic theatre director.

All of these cycles and repetitions of humiliation build up to the film's ending
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a murder that resonates with metaphor when Albert kills the circus' performing bear after failing to kill himself when he "won" Russian roulette. But life goes on, and the circus moves on, and in spite of or because of this destructive decisive action, Albert and Anne reconcile, back in the same pattern and familiar grooves that they have always been in, resigned to their life and to each other.

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Re: Auteur List: Ingmar Bergman - Discussion and Defenses

#55 Post by TMDaines » Sat Apr 08, 2017 11:16 am

Are all the Criterion Eclipse Bergman titles strictly better than their Tartan equivalents? I've only seen comparison of Torment and that was better.

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Auteur List: Ingmar Bergman - Discussion and Defenses

#56 Post by movielocke » Sun Apr 09, 2017 3:49 am

I finally watched the trilogy films (and I kinda bummed that the Ingmar Bergman makes a movie isn't on filmstruck), and I'm so glad I finally did watch them. They will be on my mind for years, inevitably.

Through a Glass Darkly my initial impression of the film reminded me of Long Day's Journey into Night, but I found this film much better, and far more interesting. I got the impression that Bergman was implying some incesty-qualities between Karin and her father and brother, but I'm not sure if that is a misread or not. It does seem like Bergman is implying something by creating the gender imbalance of three men to one woman. I love how Bergman slowly and inexorably pulls down the idyll to its disintegration. The opening feels sincerely warm but with an ominous underlying tension--they're simply trying too hard, and the crisis feels inevitable, wealth, faith, love, science none of these things can help Karin.

I did initially really dislike the ending--but it's one of those Bergman things, where when you articulate why you dislike it, you start to think you're meant to dislike it, that in fact making you dislike it is the entire point
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the line "Papa spoke to me" by the kid made me mad because it seemed like Bergman was making the film all about the kid there in the end, that Karin was just a prop in the story of his relationship to his father... then you realize that this is all Karin's crisis is to the kid, the entire recent disintegration of his sister is taken by the kid and _he makes it all about himself, not her_ "papa spoke to me" me me me. it's all about me. I kind of hated Bergman for this, but then I loved him for it. Fairly incredible. and a devastating final comment on the family.
Winter Light I'm almost certain that this will wind up my favorite of the lot, because it seems to be sticking with me more than the other two. What's remarkable is that in seeing this for the first time after seeing Scorsese's Silence
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which posits that the silence of god is not evidence of absence. and indeed twists god's silence into an affirmation of faith somehow
, my initial read of Bergman's film's was impacted by Scorsese's film. I realize the film was never intended to be read that way. I found the pace and tone of the film simply remarkable from beginning to end. The time taken with the details of the service and parishioners faces--with the ritual of it all--it was all mesmerizing. Then as the film fluxes through the day in the life aspects (with everything blown up to eleven on the melodrama scale) and we delve into the histories of these characters Marta and Tomas and what has brought Tomas to this point. I hate what he does to Marta and was stunned at his willful impotence in counseling a teetering man. In a way the push that he gave to von sydow was a blow that fell heaviest on the pregnant wife, a life now devastated by him as thoroughly as Marta's is. That Bergman has an ending that is even partly ambiguous here is amazing and perfect.

I did not love The Silence as much as the other two. It feels like Bergman so ruthlessly elided everything in the film (unlike the other two films, everything is implied and nothing is stated) that he cut too much from the bone and the film did not succeed as well for me. Of course this probably means that it just needs another viewing, as the context of the total relationship of Ester and Anna from having seen the film once probably makes the first half of the film a little less opaque. In a way, the film is very anti-theatrical, even though it's basically written as a black-box play, there simply is no dialog there that a play would need. Here it's all faces and looks, and looking and to-be-looked-at-ness and insert shots. The film feels much more editing heavy than the other recent films, with all the insert shots of emaciated horses, tanks, sex signs, etc

I think I would like the film a lot more if they are lovers pretending to be sisters to live their life together, that the papa they speak of is only father to one of them, but both have taken to calling him papa in he old fashioned way (like how Rosalind russel refers to and addresses her future mother in law as only "mother" in his girl Friday). But I think completely overdeterming the film as a Bergman "the kids are all right" isn't really supported. An incesty storyline seems so much less interesting and far more over the top silly, but I suspect that is more what was going for. But so much has been chopped out of the direct text that the subtext is so amorphous as to hold no shape nor meaning for very long.

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Re: Auteur List: Ingmar Bergman - Discussion and Defenses

#57 Post by Rayon Vert » Sun Apr 09, 2017 2:56 pm

bottled spider wrote:Crisis. There are no random dwarves or vaginal insertions of broken glass, so I guess this isn't really art, but I quite liked it anyway.
That got a chuckle out of me.

The Silence. Yeah, my general feeling towards this film is a bit like the other people here that have talked about it. I had forgotten there was this much sex in it, though, and I noticed there were quite a few sequences where the camera brings attention to itself in its movements, which feels somewhat rare in Bergman. (I read the chapter afterwards in Images and Bergman references this and that it was a deliberate break from the style of the two previous films and that they had a lot of fun doing it.) The film can feel a bit at times like a caricature of a modernist “art film”. I was still left liking it some, though – maybe to do with the atmosphere - and appreciated all that silence (quite marked early on) right after going through the non-stop verbal diarrhea of Scenes from a Marriage.

I always wonder about the possible connection between the thin young boy here and the one (looking very similar) in Bergman’s next important film.

What I didn’t get was how this film was any significant way an extension of the previous two films. What little there is about an “absent God” is in the revelation of the younger sister’s grievances about the older, and the points seems to have more to do with the younger sister’s having felt psychologically oppressed by her. I felt validated when reading, in another chapter in Images, that the “trilogy” was a rationalization after the fact, and that Bergman now feels it has “neither rhyme nor reason”.

The Magician. I seem to remember Woody Allen mentioning this film as one of a handful of the Bergman greats (the others being Seventh Seal, Persona, Wild Strawberries and Cries and Whispers if I remember correctly). Does anybody else here feel like this? Viewing it again reinforced my initial impression: it’s not bad but it’s derivative of superior Bergman films. We’ve got a traveling performing troupe again (Sawdust and Tinsel), a trip through "magical" woods with some potential supernatural features (Seal) and an odd mixture of the usual Bergman humiliation psychodrama, some light existentialist anguish, and elements of a sex farce (Smiles of a Summer Night – even with Aki Fridell kind of reprising his role there). I like the look and the production design, and to some degree the comic bits, but the dramatic parts leave me cold and unimpressed.

Face to Face. Wow this is a lot worse than I remembered it. I know Bergman did some major pieces in the 70s that have a lot of admirers, but on the whole he seems to be drifting and (relatively) less inspired, without the drive that made his previous work – say from the mid-50s to the end of the 60s – feel like a cohesive quest, both thematically and stylistically. Again in the 70s he seems mostly concerned with pure psychology – the trauma people have gone through in their upbringings, especially, so that they are never “real” – but here Jenny’s journey isn’t especially interesting, and there isn’t either the same level of visual artistry and distinctiveness in earlier films like Cries and Whispers or Persona, say.

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Re: Auteur List: Ingmar Bergman - Discussion and Defenses

#58 Post by knives » Sun Apr 09, 2017 3:59 pm

It's the same exact actor playing the boy in both films. As to The Magician, either it or Autumn Sonata will be my number one so I suppose I should give a small defense of it (though Face to Face will probably be on my list as well so maybe we just don't have compatible tastes). I'll agree that it doesn't offer anything new to Bergman, but I don't tend to view originality as a particularly significant component to art especially from an auteurist perspective where the entire idea comes from narrative, thematic, and even crew repetitions. Obviously Bergman is not as extreme in this respect as late Ozu or Hong Sang Soo, but the same as how every blonde before Vertigo makes that all the more powerful a work of art all of the troupes culminate to justify The Magician. I view it in many respects to be the climax to the second act of Bergman's career where he has transitioned into more surreal imagery and a more bizarre methodology of melodrama which he would blow up to epic proportions in his next section while retaining the earthiness of the first period. It isn't merely that we have again traveling players wondering around the woods as something grand pushes them into conflict, but also how this variation shows the sad nature of all of that. The death of magic as represented in the film's finale is one of Bergman's most tragic moments where he as pulled the wool away showing that the death of not just the deity, but also anything that can convince the human mind of it. That is probably why, even though I'm not really a fan, The Virgin Spring is such a valuable coda showing how Christianity without the goodness or fear that magic con inspire is like the pagans. The Magician sets the stage for the explicit questioning and silence in the next set of films.

I just recently watched Saraband, was planning on posting this later but it seems relevant now, and it too works as a culmination of a set of repetitions.

Bergman's relationship with his mother as played out by his films seems really weird and this disturbing oedipal run at it is such a surprising climax to all of the Karins who populate Bergman land. The film itself functions that way. It is so quiet that it became a surprise when the film turned out to be great with each piece replicating the past in a new way that shocks. Karin's story recalls The Virgin Spring in an unexpected fashion, if you can't tell her introduction is what converted me to the film, changing dying concerns of religion (that nevertheless are as prominent as the tiny cross hanging on her neck) for the psychological lack of control that obsessed Bergman's later works. Likewise Ullmann's role, especially in the opening two chapters, is an all too familiar one perhaps best exemplified previously in the father of Autumn Sonata. Here though her fourth wall breaking trickster can't afford to only wryly watch the play set before her. It's her play too bringing this theatrical technique back to its origin in a way. All of this gives the film a greater sense of time than I've ever associated with Begman who, to talk a it from Deleuze, seems an architect of space in his films with time almost not existing in a literal sense. There's a bit of that too here though it is so emphasized like in Ullmann's talk at the beginning about starring for ten minutes even as that does not match the time we've seen. Throughout the film in subtle and obvious ways the film talks about time, running out of it, needing it, having it in excess, lots and lots of time.

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Re: Auteur List: Ingmar Bergman - Discussion and Defenses

#59 Post by movielocke » Mon Apr 10, 2017 4:00 am

I finally started Scenes from a Marriage, a show I'd not watched because it was so long. but filmstruck is sort of perfect for this, since every episode is listed seperately. I hate binging through shows, so this is perfect for me, allowing me to watch one episode a night, like I did for Dekalog, suddenly, just thinking about watching it via a different method than one sitting made me actually look forward to watching it. If they ever get Berlin Alexanderplatz up on filmstruck, I might actually watch that show too, instead of avoiding it.

The first episode was so damn good, the opening interview is flat out brilliant, the disgusting egotism of the husband are only topped by the amazing expressions his wife as he extolls all his virtues--which is not to say that it was ever obvious or broad, it wasn't, but I found it funny in a way that was basically non existent in the trilogy I just watched. But it is the shock cut of going from the "happy" decision at the end of the discussion in bed to the post-op hospital bed that completely stunned me. It completely upends the audiences expectations, and really sets the stage, I presume for everything to follow. It certainly left me completely hooked.

by the way, I was wrong, Ingmar Bergman makes a Movie is on filmstruck, but you cannot find it by searching for it by title or by director. It only appears in the supplement section of Winter Light, I watched the first episode of that as well. Very interesting to hear Bergman discuss his own material in the act of creating it.

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Re: Auteur List: Ingmar Bergman - Discussion and Defenses

#60 Post by TMDaines » Mon Apr 10, 2017 4:36 am

Why would you ever plan to watch that in a single night?! It's a TV mini-series. It's not designed to be watched in a sitting or two.

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Re: Auteur List: Ingmar Bergman - Discussion and Defenses

#61 Post by A man stayed-put » Mon Apr 10, 2017 7:00 am

TMDaines wrote:Why would you ever plan to watch that in a single night?! It's a TV mini-series. It's not designed to be watched in a sitting or two.
Indeed but even watched episodically, in the way that movielocke has now settled on, it ends up being very difficult not to play the "just one more episode" game with it. I watched it on consecutive nights a few years ago and it was one of the most gripping and rewarding film/TV experiences I've ever had (it was high on my list in the All-time project).
I've got quote a few Bergman's to work through before the end of the project (and really love some others) but Scenes... will be difficult to top.

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Re: Auteur List: Ingmar Bergman - Discussion and Defenses

#62 Post by TMDaines » Mon Apr 10, 2017 9:43 am

Fopp currently have promotion on Tartan's Bergman DVDs at £5 each. Seventh Seal Blu-ray is £6. Manchester branch had everything I wanted bar The Devil's Eye, which didn't show up with the rest of the stock.

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Re: Auteur List: Ingmar Bergman - Discussion and Defenses

#63 Post by knives » Fri Apr 14, 2017 1:00 am

Last Pair Out
Obviously this is interesting to compare to Torment, though surprisingly it is not just because it is this pair of great minds' followup. Last Pair Out also closely mirrors their first film so closely as to highlight how much more mature each had become over the decade. Sjoberg in particular is very impressive here allowing so many incidental moments and developing such a naturalistic framing style that it is hard to believe as the same person who gave us that earlier piece of theater noir (even compared to the then much more recent Miss Julie this comes across as from an artist grown significantly). I'm sure Rebel Without a Cause was at least some of the inspiration for getting this off the ground, but Sjoberg plays things almost completely the opposite of Ray. He gives so much additional sympathy to the parents, teachers, doctor, and other adults that the sympathy given to the kids comes across as an absolute part of the camera eye leaving an almost objective approach to the events allowing for the kids to come across in a negative light when they do do something wrong like the opening scene with the teacher. He also underplays it to the point where this doesn't feel like a melodrama even as the events are firmly in that corner. There's a dry, casual feeling to the acting aside from the parents' first scene that almost possesses a cruelty suggesting this as the way of the world. The film takes in a toughness that most teen films from this era forward don't really consider instead more commonly treating the young as an id controlled human. These are full people walking with there cross (I think that was the point of that scene with the kid anyway).

No small part of that success can be attributed to Bergman even as Sjoberg gives forth the loudest voice in the crew. His script is a wonderful piece of madness relentless in its cruel yet kind hearted fashion with a creepy oedipal text alongside other elements of the psychologically bizarre. He's fashioned as morally complex a script as he could in the '50s. The most interesting thing is the protagonist's slow decent into a territory that is almost villainous due to a sympathetic take on the Gertrude-Claudius relationship and a thorough examination of successfully stopping it would look like (which does lead to some amusing sexism with the agreed upon assumption by everyone that once the mother gets old her ability to tryst will stop). And of course this all only covers the film's first hour for which Eva Dahlbeck is a perfect embodiment of all of this. She looks very maternal yet also plays up a sensuality that is very effective at producing confusion. I haven't really taken note of her before, but I'll definitely examine her performance the next time I see Smiles of a Summer Night or Eva. Once the other Andersson gets a rise to prominence things become a teenage angst fever dream. It's unsatisfying in how it deals with the earlier plot (or rather doesn't), but it also seems very true to the characters and the only way to prevent this from going a full In This Our Life and allows the seeds of Scenes from a Marriage to be planted. Barring a rewatch of Eva I'd say this is easily the best of the Bergman scripted films I've seen and a hard one to beat for the remaining.

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Re: Auteur List: Ingmar Bergman - Discussion and Defenses

#64 Post by Rayon Vert » Sat Apr 15, 2017 5:45 pm

The Devil’s Eye. Peter Cowie was right in comparing this film with The Magician, two films that share a certain Gothic arch-comic feel with Bergman’s darker existential themes running through them. Though this one is more of a pure (but dark) comedy, and a minor film, but pleasing enough. I agree with Domino that the central Don Juan story gets hijacked, but actually the parts involving the pastor’s wife and Pablo are more fun and interesting. Apart from some of the writing and acting, the pleasure I get is from the look of the film - I’m struck again at the skill Bergman has in creating distinctive sets (indoors or outdoors), and somehow many of his actors (whether by chance of purpose) have uncommon and striking faces that make them naturals for these types of theatrical, fairy-tale/fantasy roles.

Hour of the Wolf. I slightly prefer the other films in the Faro trilogy or quadrilogy, but then they’ll all be making my list. I like the mystery and oneiric qualities of the film, and more than the narrative I’m won over by Bergman’s form and experimental spirit – immensely creative, varied and attractive shots and montage, as well as the use of a modernist, dissonant score, elements that add up to make the film, like its predecessor Persona, a delight for the senses.

Port of Call. I share knives’ appreciation for this film. The strong neorealist (Italian, Carné) dimension gives it a distinctive flavor. The melodrama is reined in somewhat, and the determinism of the milieu is balanced by the optimism of the love story. Even though this is early Bergman, still trying to find his voice, the film succeeds on its own scale. Bengt Eklund as the young man is a bit bland and lacking definition, but Nine-Christine Jönsson gives a strong, soulful performance. Also, abortion is a topic in this film, but I don’t know if anyone else has noticed how often it seems to come up in Bergman’s early films.

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Auteur List: Ingmar Bergman - Discussion and Defenses

#65 Post by movielocke » Mon Apr 17, 2017 4:37 pm

Scenes from a Marriage I imagine it would be hard for any married person not to find some reflection of themselves in this story, it truly is an incredible glimpse at two people's interactions over a long dissolution. That said, there have been few characters I have loathed more completely and totally than Johan. It nearly becomes a problem as Johan is such a perfect example of what I think of as human garbage (abandons family, misogynist, adulterer, alcoholic, emotionally abusive, physically abusive, white privilege, male privilege, class privilege and somehow thinks he has no privilege &c, &c, &c) that it makes it overly easy to completely side with Marianne, which I don't think we should necessarily do, as viewers, because doing so blinds us to her agency in it all, this is a duet afterall and she is actively maintaining this relationship. Harsh words aside, Johan and Marianne are completely fascinating, three-dimensional characters and the running time truly does fly by throughout these little plays. The second episode we begin to suspect that Johan is an emotionally abusive spouse, only to be confirmed in the third episode which is almost a complete tutorial on successful verbal strategies victimizers use to abuse their targets (and Marianne is an almost textbook examples of how the abused respond and negotiate the relationship they depend so heavily upon), the third episode is especially emotionally devastating in this regard. Of course we then have the fourth episode of attempting to negotiate a return of the status quo before finally getting the fifth episode, with its violent dissolution of the marriage. I'm not surprised at the ending, the complexity of their emotional entanglement is such that some sort of reuniting seems inevitable. Absolutely a masterpiece, I'm really glad I finally sat down to watch it.

The Magic Flute I admit that right after the intermission when Sarastro's prayer song begins I was put to sleep as hard as I've ever fallen asleep watching a film late at night. I woke up almost three hours later, totally disoriented, as usually dozing off is a fairly light thing of a few minutes, an event that is basically a signal to shut the TV off and go to bed.

Watching the second half the next night, I was struck at how different the two halves feel. The first half is almost entirely singing, playful, silly, and fairly charming (I completely adore Papageno and the actor playing him was hands down the best performance of the film), if often making plot leaps I was confused by (Papageno and Tumino separating with Papageno somehow appearing in Pamina's chambers, or Tumino switching to Sarastro's side). The second half has a lot more dialog, and I think the songs being offset by these dialog interstitials makes the entire piece flow better. The visuals of the second half are also far more striking, I think it's somewhat a result of being within the film's peculiar stage play grammar for an hour, but it feels like the entire thing becomes gradually more filmic. the cutaways to the red-headed child making faces in the final half hour of the film were startling in how disruptive they jumped out at me, compared to how they seemed constant and not very disruptive in the first half.

Overall, it's fascinating, worth watching for the visuals and Papageno, mostly. Quite enjoyable, and now I have Mozart stuck in my head like an earworm, so that is a pleasant ear worm change.

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Re: Auteur List: Ingmar Bergman - Discussion and Defenses

#66 Post by movielocke » Tue Apr 18, 2017 5:26 pm

I popped in fanny and Alexander last night and was totally bummed to see they're 90 minute episodes not fifty minute episodes, that feels like more work for some silly perspective reason. I've finished off all Bergman spines, now I've got a ton of his other films in my FilmStruck queue, I'm thinking hour of the wolf and shame are the next most prominent films and are therefore on deck, after those two, what should I prioritize? I probably won't get to face to face unless there's an easy streaming option.

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Re: Auteur List: Ingmar Bergman - Discussion and Defenses

#67 Post by Rayon Vert » Tue Apr 18, 2017 10:58 pm

movielocke wrote:I popped in fanny and Alexander last night and was totally bummed to see they're 90 minute episodes not fifty minute episodes, that feels like more work for some silly perspective reason.
If this is any help, the episodes aren't all 90 minutes. I'm too lazy to pop in the blu ray again, but the 4 F&A episodes are on youtube and are of the following lengths: 1h32, 1h15, 0h57 and 1h23. This is about right (with a few minutes shaved off) because the total is 5h12. This feels easier to watch in one go than Scenes, but it can fairly easily be split into two evenings.

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Re: Auteur List: Ingmar Bergman - Discussion and Defenses

#68 Post by Rayon Vert » Tue Apr 18, 2017 11:19 pm

movielocke wrote: I've finished off all Bergman spines, now I've got a ton of his other films in my FilmStruck queue, I'm thinking hour of the wolf and shame are the next most prominent films and are therefore on deck, after those two, what should I prioritize? I probably won't get to face to face unless there's an easy streaming option.
Yeah Criterion seems to have released all/most of the biggest films, and I agree Hour of the Wolf and Shame are next in order of Importance. I'd think films like The Passion of Anna, Face to Face, From the Life of the Marionettes, The Devil's Eye and maybe Saraband would be among the next in line, and Port of Call and To Joy from the Eclipse set.

The films I personally esteemed/liked least were: A Lesson in Love, A Ship to India, Crisis, and especially Brink of Life and The Rite. (I haven't seen All These Women.) I didn't care much for Secrets of Women and After the Rehearsal either.
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Re: Auteur List: Ingmar Bergman - Discussion and Defenses

#69 Post by knives » Tue Apr 18, 2017 11:38 pm

I think After the Rehearsal is actually the most successful (of those I've seen) of the later television style. I prefer it over Scenes From a Marriage even though I recognize I'm the lone voice to go that far. Also in rewatching Through A Glass Darkly what I remembered of the film doesn't get introduced until about a half hour in and there is a lot less exposition than I remember. The play in particular came as a pleasant surprise.

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Re: Auteur List: Ingmar Bergman - Discussion and Defenses

#70 Post by Rayon Vert » Wed Apr 19, 2017 12:56 am

domino harvey wrote:SCREENPLAY ONLY

Torment / Hets (Alf Sjöberg 1944) R1 Eclipse
Woman Without a Face (Gustaf Molander 1947) No english-subbed commercial release
Eva (Gustaf Molander 1948) R2 Tartan
While the City Sleeps / Medan staden sover (Lars-Eric Kjellgren 1950) No english-subbed commercial release
Divorced / Frånskild (Gustaf Molander 1951) No english-subbed commercial release
Last Pair Out / Sista paret ut (Alf Sjöberg 1956) No english-subbed commercial release
the Pleasure Garden / Lustgården (Alf Kjellin 1961) No english-subbed commercial release
the Blessed Ones / De två saliga (Ulla Isaksson 1986) No english-subbed commercial release
the Best Intentions / Den goda viljan (Billie August 1991) R1/A Film Movement (Theatrical version only)
Sunday’s Children / Söndagsbarn (Daniel Bergman 1992) No english-subbed commercial release
Private Confessions / Enskilda samtal (Liv Ullmann 1996) No english-subbed commercial release
Faithless / Trolösa (Liv Ullmann 2000) R1 Alchemy (Theatrical version only)
The filmography at the end of Bergman's book Images says The Blessed Ones was directed by him (but based on a Isaksson screenplay), and the Wiki article says the same.

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Re: Auteur List: Ingmar Bergman - Discussion and Defenses

#71 Post by Rayon Vert » Sat Apr 22, 2017 5:21 pm

Wild Strawberries. I wouldn’t disagree with anyone ranking this among Bergman’s greatest and most perfect films. Watching it again, I have nothing to say against it, but I was left with the same feeling as the last few times I saw it, which is that as much I find it an accomplished - and strikingly handsome – film, it doesn’t move me that much, and even leaves me a little cold.

Summer with Monika.
In a way, this material is very much like Port of Call (both films based on source material that isn’t Bergman’s own): the sociopsychological study of a young, working class troubled couple, with some occasional quasi-neorealist features. But Bergman’s directorial talent has advanced so much by now. It’s one of the great cinematic riffs on the doomed-escape-from-civilization theme (which always brings to my mind the comparable sequences in Pierrot le Fou), and that middle chunk of the film is just absolutely superb and magical, with scenes that are at once documentary-like and sensual, with a terrific vitality to them. Harriet Andersson really created an indelible figure out of a somewhat two-dimensional immature pest. The transformation in Monika’s attitude with Harry at the end is a bit abrupt, though, but on the other hand there are signs of her destructive egoism (and of its roots in her lacking milieu) since the beginning.

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Re: Auteur List: Ingmar Bergman - Discussion and Defenses

#72 Post by domino harvey » Sun Apr 23, 2017 2:28 pm

I revisited the Seventh Seal last week and was surprised at how scrappily-composed and especially edited it was. I know this gets bandied about as one of Bergman's seminal works, but it really struck me on rewatch how transitional it is between his early melodramas and his more rigorously composed later works. That there was only a few years separating this from the Virgin Spring is astonishing. I, uh, don't think it's even going to make my list (!). For all its problems it at least has one truly magnificent sequence (the self-flagellation intrusion), though that alone can't reconcile the uneasy and broad "comedy" (Sorry Cowie, I don't find "I could have raped you, you know" the height of wit) and the messy, earnest mythical aspects. And lord, the editing, especially in the first act! Maybe if I'd seen this (like many seemingly did) as one of my first Bergmans I'd have a higher (or at least sentimental) opinion of it, but it just barely figures into the plus column for me in the end.

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Re: Auteur List: Ingmar Bergman - Discussion and Defenses

#73 Post by Rayon Vert » Sun Apr 23, 2017 2:38 pm

domino harvey wrote: For all its problems it at least has one truly magnificent sequence (the self-flagellation intrusion)
When I rewatched the film recently, I was struck with the use of Dies Irae in that scene - that, the many references to judgment day and the witch burning scene made me wonder if Bergman was influenced by Dreyer's Day of Wrath. Björnstrand is terrific here - he steals the movie.

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Re: Auteur List: Ingmar Bergman - Discussion and Defenses

#74 Post by domino harvey » Sat Apr 29, 2017 8:14 pm

Oh hey, lists are due Friday. Did you forget? I forgot. Don't forget! Submit by Friday!

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Re: Auteur List: Ingmar Bergman - Discussion and Defenses

#75 Post by Rayon Vert » Sun Apr 30, 2017 1:27 pm

Winter Light. Others have already talked about this one and I share their admiration for it. It's a tough film but I love its starkness and simplicity and its formal beauty. And the outdoor scenes have almost a documentary-style noir-like feel to them.

Music in Darkness. This was my sole virgin watch for the project, on domino’s recommendation. I read up a bit on it beforehand and apparently Bergman needed a hit after two box-office flops and was encouraged to helm this more sentimental script. I thought it was successful enough within the scope of its aims, definitely lighter and more optimistic than regular Bergman fare but fairly likeable.

That's it for me for the Bergman retrospective.

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