Articles from the Boston Compass, Film

BIG 3 FILM: Ingmar Bergman



Sat 9/1 – Sun 9/30 @ Brattle Theatre, Coolidge Corner Theatre, & Harvard Film Archive

See websites for showtimes & ticket info


Swedish cinema legend Ingmar Bergman, had he been alive to see it, would have marked his one hundredth birthday this past July. Instead, having died on his beloved island of Fårö in 2007, at the age of 89, he probably spent his centennial like any other day—playing chess with death, wailing about God’s silence, falling in and out of love, and writing plays to pass the purgatory. But if he has access to his archive, as I expect he does, perhaps his first and favorite pastime in eternity is to rummage around within it, screening reels and scanning artifacts as if he were a child unleashed in the enchanted, bric-a-brac-stacked drawing rooms of Fanny & Alexander (1982), transfixed by the costumes, props, and sundry charged objects. We can all do the same, right here in real life, thanks to the arrival in Boston of the remarkable, exhaustive, resplendent retrospective of Bergman’s films that’s been travelling all over the world this year. The venues are several, the despair and ennui palpable (albeit cut with joy and desire), and the opportunity to take in, on big screens and fine prints, all the varied, decades-spanning professional arcs of the auteur’s carefully cultivated network of gifted performers (think Ullmann, Andersson, Sydow, Josephson) is unmissable.


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