Author Topic: Ingmar Bergman  (Read 43044 times)

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Gold Trumpet

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Re: Ingmar Bergman
« Reply #150 on: November 27, 2005, 05:06:20 PM »
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anyways, Bergman fans unite with Scenes from a Marriage!

gob

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Re: Ingmar Bergman
« Reply #151 on: July 16, 2006, 03:52:39 AM »
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I ploughed through the 5 hour TV version of Fanny and Alexander yesterday. Such an amazing film.
Despite having a great amount of characters, all of them are clearly defined and well explored.
The poetry of the language also blew me away as well as made me chuckle - e.g. Gustav's angry rant: 'kiss me where my back changes name!'
Indeed I found myself so invested in the film that I was grinding my teeth and wriggling like a crackhead as I waited to discover the fate of Fanny, Alexander and Emilie.

Bergman isn't a flash director but he does often have flourishes of breathtaking style that completely enhance the film and its dreamlike nature: the ghosts, the puppets, the burning Bishop's Aunt!

I'd had the dvd lying around for a long time off internet rental and always hesitated to watch it because of its length and what I assumed would be its obliqueness. But it's  an accessible, charming and intelligent film that doesn't descend into mindless pretention as more indulgent "art house" cinema often does.

When I've got the cash it's definitely going to be a Criterion purchase of this awesome film. I urge the rest of you to persevere with its beast of a running time and experience this immersive, beautifully crafted piece of cinema.

matt35mm

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Re: Ingmar Bergman
« Reply #152 on: July 16, 2006, 12:45:57 PM »
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Yep, he's one of my favorites.  Now plow through the 5 hour Scenes from a Marriage, which is more stripped down (really only 2 characters are focused on, and the sets and cinematography are quite bare), and yet, in my opinion, more engaging.  It really forces you to watch the actors faces and listen to the words, which, in the case of this film, is a total thrill.

Then watch all of the other Bergman films, and finish it off by reading his notes on his own work, entitled Images.

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Re: Ingmar Bergman
« Reply #153 on: July 30, 2007, 06:43:58 AM »
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Swedish Director Ingmar Bergman Dies

Monday July 30, 2007 11:31 AM
By LOUISE NORDSTROM
Source: Guardian

STOCKHOLM, Sweden (AP) - Swedish director Ingmar Bergman, an iconoclastic filmmaker widely regarded as one of the great masters of modern cinema, died Monday, local media reported. He was 89.

Bergman died at his home in Faro, Sweden, Swedish news agency TT said, citing his daughter Eva Bergman. A cause of death was not immediately available.

Through more than 50 films, Bergman's vision encompassed all the extremes of his beloved Sweden: the claustrophobic gloom of unending winter nights, the gentle merriment of glowing summer evenings and the bleak magnificence of the island where he spent his last years.

Bergman, who approached difficult subjects such as plague and madness with inventive technique and carefully honed writing, became one of the towering figures of serious filmmaking.

He was ``probably the greatest film artist, all things considered, since the invention of the motion picture camera,'' Woody Allen said in a 70th birthday tribute in 1988.

Bergman first gained international attention with 1955's ``Smiles of a Summer Night,'' a romantic comedy that inspired the Stephen Sondheim musical ``A Little Night Music.''

``The Seventh Seal,'' released in 1957, riveted critics and audiences. An allegorical tale of the medieval Black Plague years, it contains one of cinema's most famous scenes - a knight playing chess with the shrouded figure of Death.

``I was terribly scared of death,'' Bergman said of his state of mind when making the film, which was nominated for an Academy Award in the best picture category.

The film distilled the essence of Bergman's work - high seriousness, flashes of unexpected humor and striking images.

In a 2004 interview with Swedish broadcaster SVT, the reclusive filmmaker acknowledged that he was reluctant to view his work.

``I don't watch my own films very often. I become so jittery and ready to cry ... and miserable. I think it's awful,'' Bergman said.

Though best known internationally for his films, Bergman also was a prominent stage director. He worked at several playhouses in Sweden from the mid-1940s, including the Royal Dramatic Theater in Stockholm, which he headed from 1963 to 1966. He staged many plays by the Swedish author August Strindberg, whom he cited as an inspiration.

The influence of Strindberg's grueling and precise psychological dissections could be seen in the production that brought Bergman an even-wider audience: 1973's ``Scenes From a Marriage.'' First produced as a six-part series for television, then released in a theater version, it is an intense detailing of the disintegration of a marriage.

Bergman showed his lighter side in the following year's ``The Magic Flute,'' again first produced for TV. It is a fairly straight production of the Mozart opera, enlivened by touches such as repeatedly showing the face of a young girl watching the opera and comically clumsy props and costumes.

Bergman remained active later in life with stage productions and occasional TV shows. He said he still felt a need to direct, although he had no plans to make another feature film.

In the fall of 2002, Bergman, at age 84, started production on ``Saraband,'' a 120-minute television movie based on the two main characters in ``Scenes From a Marriage.''

In a rare news conference, the reclusive director said he wrote the story after realizing he was ``pregnant with a play.''

``At first I felt sick, very sick. It was strange. Like Abraham and Sarah, who suddenly realized she was pregnant,'' he said, referring to biblical characters. ``It was lots of fun, suddenly to feel this urge returning.''

The son of a Lutheran clergyman and a housewife, Ernst Ingmar Bergman was born in Uppsala on July 14, 1918, and grew up with a brother and sister in a household of severe discipline that he described in painful detail in the autobiography ``The Magic Lantern.''

The title comes from his childhood, when his brother got a ``magic lantern'' - a precursor of the slide-projector - for Christmas. Ingmar was consumed with jealousy, and he managed to acquire the object of his desire by trading it for a hundred tin soldiers.

The apparatus was a spot of joy in an often-cruel young life. Bergman recounted the horror of being locked in a closet and the humiliation of being made to wear a skirt as punishment for wetting his pants.

He broke with his parents at 19 and remained aloof from them, but later in life sought to understand them. The story of their lives was told in the television film ``Sunday's Child,'' directed by his own son Daniel.

Young Ingmar found his love for drama production early in life. The director said he had coped with the authoritarian environment of his childhood by living in a world of fantasies. When he first saw a movie he was greatly moved.

``Sixty years have passed, nothing has changed, it's still the same fever,'' he wrote of his passion for film in the 1987 autobiography.

But he said the escape into another world went so far that it took him years to tell reality from fantasy, and Bergman repeatedly described his life as a constant fight against demons, also reflected in his work.

The demons sometimes drove him to great art - as in ``Cries and Whispers,'' the deathbed drama that climaxes when the dying woman cries ``I am dead, but I can't leave you.'' Sometimes they drove him over the top, as in ``Hour of the Wolf,'' where a nightmare-plagued artist meets real-life demons on a lonely island.

Bergman also waged a fight against real-life tormentors: Sweden's powerful tax authorities.

In 1976, during a rehearsal at the Royal Dramatic Theater, police came to take Bergman away for interrogation about tax evasion. The director, who had left all finances to be handled by a lawyer, was questioned for hours while his home was searched. When released, he was forbidden to leave the country.

The case caused an enormous uproar in the media and Bergman had a mental breakdown that sent him to hospital for over a month. He later was absolved of all accusations and in the end only had to pay some extra taxes.

In his autobiography he admitted to guilt in only one aspect: ``I signed papers that I didn't read, even less understood.''

The experience made him go into voluntary exile in Germany, to the embarrassment of the Swedish authorities. After nine years, he returned to Stockholm, his longtime base.

It was in the Swedish capital that Bergman broke into the world of drama, starting with a menial job at the Royal Opera House after dropping out of college.

Bergman was hired by the script department of Swedish Film Industry, the country's main production company, as an assistant script writer in 1942.

In 1944, his first original screenplay was filmed by Alf Sjoeberg, the dominant Swedish film director of the time. ``Torment'' won several awards including the Grand Prize of the 1946 Cannes Film Festival, and soon Bergman was directing an average of two films a year as well as working with stage production.

After the acclaimed ``The Seventh Seal,'' he quickly came up with another success in ``Wild Strawberries,'' in which an elderly professor's car trip to pick up an award is interspersed with dreams.

Other noted films include ``Persona,'' about an actress and her nurse whose identities seem to merge, and ``The Autumn Sonata,'' about a concert pianist and her two daughters, one severely handicapped and the other burdened by her child's drowning.

The date of the funeral has not yet been set, but will be attended by a close group of friends and family, the TT news agency reported.

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Re: Ingmar Bergman
« Reply #154 on: July 30, 2007, 09:51:56 AM »
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new banner idea:

INGMAR BERGMAN: STILL NOT DEAD

INVALIDATED.
Christopher Nolan's directive was clear to everyone in the cast and crew: Use CGI only as a last resort.

matt35mm

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Re: Ingmar Bergman
« Reply #155 on: July 30, 2007, 12:14:09 PM »
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Very sad.  I hope, after all his agonizing over death in his youth, that it was finally peaceful for him.

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Re: Ingmar Bergman
« Reply #156 on: July 30, 2007, 12:14:46 PM »
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It's a good age to pass on, but it's still sad. It was a comfort to know he was still alive. Some people live in areas with mountains all around them. They find them comforting. I've lived within walking distance of the Great Lakes my entire life. The water around me is comforting. I knew he was done with films, but he was someone whose films meant a lot to me. I like too many filmmakers who have long past on. They made films for different times and ages. Fanny and Alexander was made and released in my lifetime. Bergman continued to write scripts, direct plays and occasionally make a film for television during my time. Is it odd to feel you knew him better because of that?

I recommend everyone read The Magic Lantern. It is a film that bridges his life to his filmmaking and it is a work of art in itself. The film is simple for its focus on memory but eternal for what it sheds on the man.

I don't have friends who like Bergman that much. He isn't too hip or trendy for even those aware of art films where I live. But everyday this week I'll watch a film of his in memory of what he means to me.

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Re: Ingmar Bergman
« Reply #157 on: July 30, 2007, 12:39:36 PM »
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It's an eerie coincidence that the New Beverly is playing Virgin Spring and Wild Strawberries Wednesday and Thursday.  I was going anyway but now it's somewhat heavier.
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Just Withnail

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Re: Ingmar Bergman
« Reply #158 on: July 30, 2007, 03:41:29 PM »
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Few have made a contribution to film that equals his. I'll be watching Winter Light tonight, once again in awe and gratitude.
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tpfkabi

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Re: Ingmar Bergman
« Reply #159 on: July 30, 2007, 04:26:51 PM »
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had he ever spoken about his religious beliefs?
with that upbringing i imagine he tried to stay away as far as possible once he left home.

the existence/non-existence of God seemed to be a big theme in the films of his i've seen, although i can only think directly of Seventh Seal. i'm fuzzy on any religious themes in Wild Strawberries.
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cron

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Re: Ingmar Bergman
« Reply #160 on: July 30, 2007, 06:02:02 PM »
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i have this quote in a notebook

This was when Bergman, in his own words, "cast off" his faith in God, "holy rubbish that blocks one's view."
context, context, context.

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Re: Ingmar Bergman
« Reply #161 on: July 30, 2007, 07:58:50 PM »
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i have this quote in a notebook

This was when Bergman, in his own words, "cast off" his faith in God, "holy rubbish that blocks one's view."


ok, thanks.
can you remember what led to the "this was when" moment?
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Re: Ingmar Bergman
« Reply #162 on: July 31, 2007, 07:16:01 AM »
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I seem to remember reading that it was around the time of making the Seventh Seal that he let go of the idea of a God and began to believe more in the God-in-people.
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Re: Ingmar Bergman
« Reply #163 on: July 31, 2007, 09:21:11 PM »
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Ingmar Bergman: In Memory
by Roger Ebert

The solitary, poetic, fearful, creative, brave and philosophical mind of Ingmar Bergman has been stilled, and the director is dead at 89. Death was an event on which he long meditated; it was the subject of many of his greatest films, and provided his most famous single image, a knight playing chess with Death in “The Seventh Seal.”

The end came Monday on the remote island of Faro, off the Swedish coast, where he made his home and workshop for many years. During a long and productive career, he made more than 50 films, some of them in longer versions for television, and directed more than 200 plays and operas.

Woody Allen, who made some films in deliberate imitation of Bergman, said he was "probably the greatest film artist, all things considered, since the invention of the motion picture camera."

And David Mamet has just written me: “When I was young the World Theatre, in Chicago, staged an all-day Ingmar Bergman Festival. I went at ten o'clock in the morning, and stayed all day. When I left the theater it was still light, but my soul was dark, and I did not sleep for years afterwards.”

Provided with a secure home for decades within the Swedish film industry, working at Stockholm’s Film House, which his films essentially built, Bergman had unparallel freedom to make exactly the films he desired. Occasionally they were comedies, and he made a sunny version of Mozart’s “The Magic Flute,” but more often they were meditations on life and death, on the difficulties of people trying to connect, and on what he considered the silence of God. In a film like “Wild Strawberries (1957), however, he imagined an old man terrified by death, revisiting his memories, and finally finding reconciliation.

The son of a strict Lutheran minister, Bergman remembered such punishments as being locked in a cabinet and told mice would nibble at his toes. He resented his father for years, returning to that childhood again near the end of his career in “Fanny and Alexander” (1982) one of his greatest films.

What he saw as God’s refusal to intervene in the suffering on earth was the subject of his 1961-63 Silence of God Trilogy, “Through a Glass Darkly,” “Winter Light” (a pitiless film in which a clergyman torments himself about the possibility of nuclear annihilation) and “The Silence.” In his masterpiece “Persona,” (1967), an actress (Liv Ullmann) sees a television image of a monk burning himself in Vietnam, and she stops speaking. Sent to a country retreat with a nurse (Bibi Andersson), she works a speechless alchemy on her, leading to a striking image when their two faces seem to blend.

So great was the tension in that film that Bergman made it appear to catch in the projector and burn. Then, from a black screen, the film slowly rebuilt itself, beginning with crude images from the first days of the cinema. These images were suggested by a child’s cinematograph which his brother received as a present; so envious was Ingmar that he traded his brother for it, giving up his precious horde of 100 tin soldiers.

In the fullness of his career, the director settled into a rhythm. "We've already discussed the new film the year before," Sven Nykvist, his longtime cinematographer, told me in 1975. “Then Ingmar goes to his island and writes the screenplay. The next year, we shoot - usually about the fifteenth of April. Usually we are the same eighteen people working with him, year after year, one film a year."

Of the 18, one was the “hostess,” hired to serve coffee and pastries and make the set seem domestic. “How large a crew do you use?” David Lean asked him one year at Cannes. “I always work with 18 friends,” Bergman said. “That’s funny,” said Lean. “I work with 150 enemies.”

In 1975 I visited the Bergman set for “Face to Face.” He took a break and invited me to his “cell” in Film House: A small, narrow room, filled with an army cot, a desk, two chairs, and on the desk an apple and a bar of chocolate. He said he’d been watching an interview with Antonioni the night before: “I hardly heard what he said. I could not take my attention away from his face. For me, the human face is the most important subject of the cinema.”

Nykvist was his collaborator in filming those faces, and in “The Passion of Anna” (1969) did something unprecedented: Filmed a conversation by the light of a single candle. “He said it could be done, and he was right,” Bergman said.

Bergman was married five times and had eight children, including Liv Ullmann’s daughter, the novelist Linn. He was not proud of how he behaved in some of those relationships, and in an extraordinary late film, “Faithless” (2000), written by Bergman and directed by Ullmann, he imagines a director (Erland Josephson) hiring an actress (Lena Endre) to help him “think through” an unhappy affair. It becomes clear that the actress is imaginary, that the affair has some connection with Ullmann and other women, and that the film is a confession. It is all shot on Faro, in Bergman’s house.

Other filmmakers spoke in awe of Bergman’s methods, which had the luxury of time an complete independence. Haskell Wexler, the great cinematographer, has just written me: “I was good friends with Sven Nykvist, who told me stories about Bergman. They sat in a big old church from very early in the morning until as black as the night gets. They noted where the light moved through the stained glass windows. Bergman planned where he would stage the scenes for a picture they were about to do. This had the practical advantage of minimizing light and generator costs. Sven said sitting alone with Ingmar in the church had a profound effect on him. I asked him if it made him more religious. He said he didn’t think so but it did give him some kind of spiritual connection to Ingmar which helped him deal with the times Bergman became very mean…”

There are so many memories crowding in, now, from the richness of Bergman’s work, that I know not what to choose. A turning point in his despair occurred, perhaps, in “Cries and Whispers,” a chamber drama in an isolated Swedish estate where Harriet Andersson is dying painfully of cancer and her sisters have come to be with her. After she dies,they find a journal in which she recalls a perfect day in the autumn, when the pain was not so bad, and the women took up their parasols and walked in the garden. "This is happiness. I cannot wish for anything better," she writes. "I feel profoundly grateful to my life, which gives me so much."

When “Faithless” played at Cannes in 2001, Liv Ullmann told me this story:

“When he was 60 years old he celebrated his birthday on his island, on that beach. And my daughter was there; she was five years old. And…he said to her, 'When you are 60 what will you do then?' She said, 'I'll have a big party and my mother will be there. She'll be really old and stupid and gawky but it's gonna be great.' And he looked at her and said, 'And what about me? Will I not be there?' And the five-year-old looked up at him and she said, 'Well, you know, I'll leave the party and I'll walk down to the beach and there on the waves you will come dancing towards me’.”


----------------------------------------------------------------

Global Film Tributes To Ingmar Bergman
Source: Dateline Hollywood
 
Respects poured in from world cinematic headliners today for Ingmar Bergman who died at his Swedish home at age 89. Here's a brief round-up from news reports:

Max Von Sydow (who appeared in 11 Bergman films) spoke of his "infinite gratitude" not only for the professional opportunities but also "the immense privilege to have been his friend." As an actor, he said, "no one counted as much for me as Ingmar Bergman."

Bibi Andersson, who made 13 movies with Bergman,: "It's very sad, but he was an old man, so we were prepared that he would die. I knew him well and will miss him very much."

Michael Apted, head of the Directors Guild of America: "Bergman was the epitome of a director's director -- creating beautiful, complex and smart films that imprinted permanently into the psyche." The DGA gave Bergman its highest honor, the Lifetime Achievement Award in 1990.

Woody Allen bid him farewell with a final joke. "I was very saddened by the death of Ingmar Bergman. He was a friend and certainly the greatest film artist of my lifetime. He told me that he was afraid that he would die on a very, very sunny day. and I can only hope it was overcast and he got the weather he wanted."

Gilles Jacob, president of the Cannes Film Festival, said "modern cinema has lost one of its last pioneers, a pioneer of genius."

Sir Richard Attenborough: "The world has lost one of its very greatest filmmakers. He taught us all so much throughout his life."

Bille August, the Danish director: "He was one of the world's biggest personalities. There were Kurosawa, Fellini and then Bergman. Now he is also gone. It is a great loss. I am in shock."

Astrid Soderbergh Widding, president of The Ingmar Bergman Foundation, which administers the directors' archives: "Ingmar Bergman's passing away represents a loss of unfathomable magnitude. His artistic accomplishments were ground-breaking, unique -- but also of a scope that covered film and theatre as well as literature. He was the internationally most renowned Swede, and just a few months ago his artistic achievement was incorporated into the UNESCO Memory of the World Register. We remember him as a very bold person, always present, often biting in his comments. But he was often one step ahead of his contemporaries. Even when he grew old surprises from Fårö were not unexpected. I believe it will take some time before we fully understand that he is no longer with us, but also the importance of his art to other people. The steady stream of letters arriving here at the Ingmar Bergman Foundation since its inception testifies to that."

Jorn Donner, producer of Fanny and Alexander, Bergman's last work for the big screen which won four Oscars: "He was one of the great ones."

Cissi Elwin, chief executive of the Swedish Film Institute, said Bergman, in a wheelchair and seeming very tired, had appeared briefly this month at an annual celebration of his career on Faro Island. "It's a very big loss today. It's very, very strange and very unreal because Ingmar Bergman is so much Swedish film."

Andrzej Wajda, the Oscar-winning Polish director, said it was Bergman's "absolute isolation" that impressed him: "He created great art, and for us -- movie directors -- he gave hope, a belief, that if we wanted to say something about ourselves, the world would notice."
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Re: Ingmar Bergman
« Reply #164 on: August 01, 2007, 10:25:06 AM »
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Swedish Director Ingmar Bergman Dies


..i think SoNowThen killed him.... :yabbse-cry:

 

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