Archive for the 'Ingmar Bergman' Category

Miller at Cannes 60

Thursday, August 2nd, 2007

Moderate CantabileL'avventura and Moderate Cantabile

Jeanne Moreau and Jean Paul Belmondo in Moderate Cantabile directed by Peter Brook, an adaptation of a story by Marguerite Duras.

See “on the bench” from Moderate Cantabile (youtube)

A selected list from films competing for the Cannes Festival 1960

L’avventura, The Virgin Spring, Kagi,
La Dolce Vita, Moderate Cantabile,
Never on Sunday, Sons and Lovers, Le Trou.
Henry Miller was a jurist (Henry Miller blog post here).
(What a line up! The previous year, Hiroshima Mon Amour and The 400 Blows blew everyone away.)

1960 was the year of fountain, spring, woods, boats and island. There was also suicide, rape, a disappearing woman, voyeurism, and don’t forget the gang of paparazzi making their cinematic debut.

And the winner of the Palme D’or is! (Click to find out.)

L’Avventura and Kagi received Special Jury Prizes, and The Virgin Spring received a special homage award. Jean Moreau and Melina Mercuri both received Best actress awards.

See the striking image from The Virgin Spring

The rape scene in the forest is of an almost unbearable brutality. I’ve never seen anything like it. But the film is more poetic than realistic, and very pure, almost chaste, in spite of the rape. From Henry Miller blog

The Virgin The Virgin Spring

Ingmar Bergman was heavily criticized for being stuck in morality fables, i.e. The Seventh Seal. After this medieval tale, The Virgin Spring, Bergman entered a new, more experimental phase of film making, with films like Persona and Scenes From a Marriage.

Ang Lee says that when he first saw The Virgin Spring as an 18-year-old in Taiwan, it “dumbfounded” and “electrified” him. He stayed in the screening room to view it a second time, and “life changed afterward”. (see him on youtube)

Henry Miller himself was partial to Kagi (An adaptation of a Tanizaki novel directed by Kon Ichikawa.) But he was a good team player and went along with the rest to vote for La Dolce Vita.

Sons and Lovers was Jack Cardiff’s best film. Dean Stockwell played against such heavyweights as Trevor Howard and Wendy Hiller.

Helen Mirren has said “The first movie that caught my imagination was L’Avventura, by Antonioni. Until then I had seen only Rock Hudson-Doris Day movies”(Via)
See Helen here on youtube.

More on Jean Moreau and Henry Miller, read here.

R.I.P Ingmar Bergman

Tuesday, July 31st, 2007

Ingmar Bergman Ingmar Bergman

BERGMAN: We artists represent the most serious things—life and death—but it is all a game.

A good intellectual, in my opinion, is one who has trouble with his emotions. He must doubt his intellect, have fantasies, and be powerfully emotional. I meet many fishermen and farmers on the island, who are completely free because their lives are so tough and close to them that they are extremely verbal. They are often crazy, but they are sure of themselves because they know their profession. And I always only work with actors who are—in a special way—self-possessed.

Film work is a powerfully erotic business; the proximity of actors is without reservations, the mutual exposure is total. The intimacy, devotion, dependency, love, confidence and credibility in front of the camera’s magical eye become a warm, possibly illusory security. The strain, the easing of tension, the mutual drawing of breath, the moment of triumph, followed by anticlimax: the atmosphere is irresistibly charged with sexuality.
It took me many years before I at last learnt that one day the camera would stop and the lights go out. (page 169 – 170, The Magic Lantern by Ingmar Bergman)

No one made film like him. (Rick Moody and others on guardian tribute.)

Obit from Greencine Daily

Bergman articles, photos from Times Topics (NYtimes)

“How I take my walk depends on the winds,” he says. “I have staked out four different routes. In May-June I cannot walk on the shore; the birds are breeding and then it’s pure Hitchcock if you go near them.”
A housekeeper comes in for three hours a day, cooking dinner according to a strict rotation. Bergman makes breakfast and lunch himself.
“At three o’clock in the afternoon I watch films,” he says. He has his own movie theatre stocked with 4,500 video cassettes. And every year he chooses between 150 and 200 reels—real film reels—at the Film Institute, which are driven by truck down to Fårö. From On Bergman, loneliness and time on his handless clock (Clock image from Alec Soth)

Francois Truffaut “His female characters are infinitely subtle, while his male characters are conventions.
Orson Wells “He’s far more foreign to me than the Japanese.”
Fellini called him a milk brother. Olivier Assayas “If I had to define where Bergman’s legacy is, I would say everywhere in French cinema.” From the view on Bergman

I would not have made any of my films or written scripts such as Taxi Driver had it not been for Ingmar Bergman – Paul Schrader

Imagine it! Bergman! Dead! Wasn’t he my first vision of what it was to be an artist? (Spurious)

Bergman saved his best work for the stage. Certainly everybody sitting in my row at the Edinburgh theater believed it, that night in the summer of 1986. (Michael Phillips)

Liv Ullman on youtube talks about Ingmar Bergman

“We Swedes are so often described through the eyes of Ingmar Bergman that we have to say, ‘no, we’re not like that.'”
From a recent article on Ingmar Bergman.

Magic, Wonder, And Even Ghosts: Fanny And Alexander’s Christmas by recently departed Teresa Duncan (Wit of the Staircase)

Ingmar was a Melancholic Workaholic (Cancer/Horse)

Previous post on Ingmar Bergman and Sven Nykvist

RIP Sven Nykvist

Wednesday, September 20th, 2006
  • 1aaCinemaSven

    From greencinedaily came this sad news, Sven Nykvist (1922 – 2006) passed away.
    Obituary from guardian here.

    Face to face (from Ingmar Bergman site)

    A genius of cinematography with an outstanding feeling for light.
    Born Sven Vilhem Nykvist on 3 December 1922 in Moheda, Kronobergs län, the son of non-conformist missionaries to Africa.

    Persona Persona Ingmar Bergman and Sven Nykvist

  • Slide show – Sven Nykvist was the medium’s Rembrandt

    When Ingmar and I made Winter Light (1963), which takes place in a church on a winter day in Sweden, we decided we should not see any shadow in it at all because there would be no logical shadow in that setting. Read more here (Shooting With Ingmar Bergman: A Conversation with Sven Nykvist)

    The trailer for “The Unbearable Lightness of Being” (Sven did that one as well!)

    From On the shooting of the Sacrifice.

    As a rule, however, it was Tarkovskij’s own visions that counted even if he at times had a hard time communicating them, partly due to the language barrier – he had to constantly work through an interpreter – but primarily due to the fact that he first and foremost wanted to communicate emotions, moods, atmosphere. By images, not by words. He wanted to impart a soul to objects and nature. Here he actually went further than Bergman ever did.

    Cries and Whispers Cries and Whispers
    List of films he worked on here.
    (Don’t forget Pretty Baby and Fanny and Alexander.)

    Sven directed “Oxen” (from In the Company of light)

    Sven was a father figure to Lasse Hallstrom with whom he made several films most famously What’s Eating Gilbert Grape (1993).

    Ingmar Bergman – The Magic Flute

    Wednesday, July 13th, 2005

    Happy Birthday! Ingmar is 87 years old today (July 14).

    Ingmar Bergman

    My affection for Ingmar Bergman grew after reading “The Magic Lantern” and the novel he wrote based on his mother’s troubled marriage. Through a Life Darkly, Woody Allen reviews Ingmar Bergman’s autobiography “The Magic Lantern.
    I read an article somewhere that Marlon Brando underlined heavily the passages from the Magic Lantern, especially concerning Bergman’s difficult relationship with his parents. The book probably sold recently at an auction house.
    In “The Best Intentions” directed by Bille August and scripted by Bergman – a story of his parents courtship and marriage ….

    Ghost Dad by David Edelstein from Slate.

    The Radical Intimacy of Bergman by Hamish Ford. (from Senses of Cinema).

    Cries and Whispers

    “In Cries and Whispers, the colors, and the images that they form, seem to be more important than the dialogue, and the entire film gives the impression of portraying a cinematic space belonging to Lacan’s pre-symbolic, pre-linguistic realm” wrote Marco Lanzagorta. (from Senses of Cinema).

    Conversation avec Bergman – Olivier Assayas on Ingmar Bergman, Summmer of Monica and Harriet Anderson.

    Some interesting facts –
    In 1989 Bergman directed Yukio Mishima’s play Madame de Sade.

    Bergman adviced Lena Olin to pursue acting instead of medicine, he directed her in films and in plays such as King Lear and Miss Julie.

    Reviews of Saraband, his recent and possibly a last film from Rottontomatoes.
    Last Dance, an article from villagevoice about how Liv Ullman got lured back from her retirement.

    An extensive site on Bergman in Spanish, here. The introductory page shows a painting by Motherwell. Most paintings by Robert Motherwell I generally love, but not this one which he dedicated to Ingmar Bergman. Many wonderful photos to look at for non Spanish speaking readers.

    It was Ingmar Bergman’s Century–we just lived in it, The Land of Lost by Mattew Wilder.

    Last April he said he was depressed with his own films, here.

    His new web site Face to Face will be launched in September, you
    can preview the trailer on the sidebar menu of vitro-nasu.

    The Magic Flute on DVD -” twenty-five years later, it remains the finest operatic film ever made” reviewed by Bright Light Film Journal.

    Just received another great link via email (thanks Hal),
    To think like the masters:Ingmar Bergman, with one more brave work, reminds us of how filmmakers can be seers, by Peter Rainer.