Torgny Segerstedt (Jesper Christensen) was one of the leading journalists in Sweden in the 20th century. As managing editor of the Gothenburg economic daily Handelstidningen, he fought a one-man battle against Adolf Hitler and fascism throughout the war years. It was a difficult fight, only made possible because of his reputation, the power of his conviction and the fact that he had friends in high places, not least among them his lover, the Jewish intellectual Maja Forssman (another tour de force performance from Pernilla August), the wife of his publisher. Exquisitely filmed in black and white, The Last Sentence continues Troell’s mission to illuminate history. Continue reading
Baron Brusenhielm at castle Tröstehult in Skåne dislikes how his young son Karl Oscar is playing “mother and father” with the tenant’s daughter Ann-Marie, as he anticipates the beginning of a future misalliance. Years pass, and Karl Oscar is about to graduate high school. He pretends to study church history but reads in fact “The Seducer’s Diary” and thinks of Ann-Marie, who is now grown up into a woman.
Three sisters return home. Elin leaves a modelling job and a once-so glamorous lifestyle in Paris to be at her mother’s 70th birthday party. Lova gives up her studies in London to live at home until she sorts herself out. Katarina’s is rapidly losing control of her double life as the married mother of two children and a hard-working surgeon with a lover, and all the while their mother, Sigrid, is preparing determinedly for the big upcoming party in her honour. Continue reading
This made-for-television film constituted Bergman’s first production of Strindberg’s A Dreamplay – a play he would revisit three times more. Gunnar Ollén’s Malmö crew was behind this, for its time, prestigious and costly theatre production, involving more than 40 actors and no less than 75 extras.
In this production, critics thought they discerned a change in Bergman’s style of directing. Ebbe Linde in Dagens Nyheter:
‘I think one can differentiate between an old and a new Ingmar Bergman: an old sensational one from the beginning of his career and a subdued, demanding one, now at his peak. That his approach implies a deepening of his art seems clear to me, at the same time as it might limit his geographical appeal.’ Continue reading
Rodriguez was the greatest ’70s U.S. rock icon who never was. His albums were critically well-received, but sales bombed, and he faded away into obscurity among rumors of a gruesome death. However, as fate would have it, a bootleg copy of his record made its way to South Africa, where his music became a phenomenal success. In a country suppressed by apartheid, his anti-establishment message connected with the people.
When his second album finally gets released on CD in South Africa, two fans take it as a sign, deciding to look into the mystery of how Rodriguez died and what happened to all of the profits from his album sales. Since very little information about the singer exists, they meet many obstacles until they uncover a shocking revelation that sets off a wild chain of events that has to be seen to be believed. Searching for Sugar Man is a story of hope, inspiration, and the resonating power of music. Continue reading
“Heavily artistically infused this chamber piece from Bergman lauded numerous international awards for both the film and the performances. It’s beautiful imagery from Sven Nykvist’s magnificent cinematography, its high level of pretension and its inability to be comprehensible have given it a unique place in cinema history. “Persona” can causes a myriad of personal reactions. Perhaps its greatest triumph is forcing the viewer to allow “it” to penetrate… to open yourself to its deeply felt expressions and perhaps have it touch upon your own. “Persona” is rife with universal emotions; pain, love, desire, regret, longing. This is a film that can be viewed multiple times garnering more from each visit … or less, depending on how you allow it to brush your subconscious… that part of you filled with emotions which you rarely, if ever, openly discuss. Continue reading
She’s one of those definitively Generation X characters, the original latchkey kid, the first one left Home Alone: Pippi Longstocking, living on her own in the pastel Villa Villekulla without benefit of adult supervision and only a horse, Little Old Man, and a monkey, Mr. Nilsson, for company. Independently wealthy, thanks to her sailor-father’s adventures in the South Seas, she buys toys and candy for the town kids, pigs out on cakes and cookies, and is assuredly a bad influence on her young next-door-neighbors, Tommy and Annika (Päaut;r Sundberg and Maria Persson). Inger Nilsson’s wild, tomboyish performance as Pippi, in these four films dating from 1969 to 1973, was instantly iconic and remains a goofy pleasure; it’s hard to imagine any filmmaking daring today, with our culturally entrenched overprotection of children, to mount a screen adaptation of a tale in which a free-spirited kid prepares a dinner of soup with nails and spikes in it (and consumes it!), builds an airplane out of wood (and flies it!), or engages in countless other activities that would today require a warning for the kids not to try this at home. (Funny how us Xer kids who adored these flicks managed to survive to adulthood…) Continue reading