While at a summerhouse, awaiting their husbands’ return, a group of sisters-in-law recount stories from their respective marriages. Rakel (Anita Björk) tells of receiving a visit from a former lover (Jarl Kulle); Marta (Maj-Britt Nilsson) of agreeing to marry a painter (Birger Malmsten) only after having his child; and Karin (Eva Dahlbeck) of being stuck with her husband (Gunnar Björnstrand) in an elevator, where they talk intimately for the first time in years. Making dexterous use of flashbacks, the engaging Waiting Women is a veritable seedbed of Bergman themes, ranging from aspiring young love to the fear of loneliness, with the finale a masterpiece of chamber comedy. Read More »
A judge in an unnamed country interviews three actors, together and singly, provoking them while investigating a pornographic performance for which they may face a fine. Their relationships are complicated: Sebastian, volatile, a heavy drinker, in debt, guilty of killing his former partner, is having an affair with that man’s wife. She is Thea, high strung, prone to fits, and seemingly fragile, currently married to Sebastian’s new partner, Hans. Hans is the troupe leader, wealthy, self-contained, growing tired. The judge plays on the trio’s insecurities, but when they finally, in a private session with him, perform the masque called The Rite, they may have their revenge. Read More »
A couple traveling across a war-ravaged Europe. A disintegrating marriage. A ballet dancer’s scarred past. Her friend’s psychological agony. Meanwhile, a widow resists seductions from two different persons – her psychiatrist and a lesbian friend. Told in flashbacks and multiple narrative threads, Ingmar Bergman’s Thirst shows people enslaved to memory and united in isolation. Read More »
Scripted (but not directed) by Ingmar Bergman, Best Intentions is a multilayered backwards glance at the courtship of Bergman’s own parents. Henrik Bergman (Samuel Froler) is a struggling theology student in the year 1909. His intended, Anna Aakerbloom (Pernilla August, who married director Bille August while the film was in progress) is from a well-to-do family. Despite the expected class differences and personality clashes, love-or at least mutual understanding-prevails. But after a harsh, spare few years as the wife of a clergyman, Anna yearns for the more bountiful pleasures of her family home. Bergman writes himself into the proceedings as a mewling infant. The current three-hour theatrical version of Best Intentions (original title: Den Goda Viljan) was simultaneously prepared as a six-hour TV miniseries, which ran in Europe, Scandanavia, and Japan. Read More »
Stig Björkman – Ingmar Bergman – Bilder från lekstugan AKA Ingmar Bergman – Images from the Playground (2009)
Images from the Playground
Short film, 2009
Behind-the-scenes compilation film directed by Stig Björkman. Depicting Ingmar Bergman on the set, both behind and in front of the camera.
The film premiered at Cannes Film Festival in 2009, within the section “Cannes Classics”. The film is produced by the Ingmar Bergman Foundation, to which Bergman donated his artistic collections in 2002, including several hours of behind-the-scenes material. Read More »
Bergman’s production Yukio Mishima’s play Madame de Sade was not the first work by the Japanese playwright to be performed in Sweden. In 1959, Dramaten had produced some of Mishima’s Noh plays and in 1970, the Swedish Theatre in Helsinki visited Dramaten with a version of Madame the Sade. Mishima had been nominated several times to the Novel Prize in literature but was passed over in favour of his mentor Kawabata (1968).
The setting of Madame de Sade begins in France in 1772 and ends twelve years later, nine months after the French Revolution. Six Women, one of them Madame de Sade, discuss their views and feelings of the notorious sadist and sodomist Marquis de Sade.
An enthusiastic critical corps focussed on Bergman’s ensemble of actresses and on the concentration and musicality of his staging. Read More »
Karin (Bibi Andersson), a happily married mother of two, surprises herself by responding in-kind to an unforeseen profession of love from David (Elliott Gould), an archaeologist visiting Sweden, whom her doctor husband (Max von Sydow) has befriended. But love, however toxically exhilarating, is seldom simple, and deceit and David’s volatile temperament take their toll. The Touch marked the first time Bergman worked with an established Hollywood star (Gould). Read More »