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Old 07-30-2007, 05:57 PM   #1
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Ingmar Bergman (1918-2007)

Ingmar Bergman, one of the most innovative, enigmatic, and undeniably influential filmmakers of all time, died peacefully this morning, leaving us (his audience) with an unparalleled back catalogue of superlative quality, that to this day, inspires and arouses the filmic passions of even the most fickle of cineastes.

So, in order to celebrate his incredible and eclectic career, I would ask of my fellow fans to name their favourite Bergman film(s), and if needs be, write an intolerably lengthy thesis on why he can be considered an artist of true integrity.

Here’s to the gloomy Swede.
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Old 07-30-2007, 08:18 PM   #2
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Truly a massive loss. Watching the Seventh Seal in my early-teens was one of those cinematic experiences that just changed me.

So yeah, R.I.P.
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Old 07-30-2007, 10:22 PM   #3
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i purchased the seventh seal a little over a week ago
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Old 07-31-2007, 12:27 AM   #4
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Persona blew my fucking mind, and I'd have to say it's my favorite of what I've seen.

I saw Wild Strawberries in film school, and then went on to watch the "religious trilogy" of Through A Glass Darkly, Winter Light, and The Silence, though I think I may have been too young to appreciate them fully.

Still haven't seen The Seventh Seal, which I'm ashamed of as a long-time cineaste. No excuse for not having seen Cries & Whispers or Fanny & Alexander, either.
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Old 07-31-2007, 01:08 AM   #5
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Both Cries and Whispers and Fanny and Alexander are two of the most overrated films of the last 40 years; not only aren't they great, but they are also awful. Unwatchably awful.

Winter Light, on the other hand, is one of the greatest films ever made. You can throw Through a Glass Darkly, Shame, Persona, and even Hour of the Wolf (maybe the most unsettling film I've ever seen) on the list, too.

He'd sucked for a long, long, long time (like many of the one-time greats, he never figured out how to shoot in color--Kurosawa, Fellini, and many others fell victim to the same aesthetic shift), but there was a time in the '60s when he was, without question, the greatest filmmaker in the world. I'll miss him terribly.
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Old 07-31-2007, 06:03 AM   #6
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Even though we all knew it was coming sooner or later, what is passing is an age of film as an art form, not just a commercial medium. He is a relic of an age where CINEMA was a word with meaning. The reason Americans in particular even knew him was becuase until 1980 or so there wereplaces to see his films....it wasn't stricltly an "Art house" form.

Now when we even have trouble getting Pan's Labyrinth into a mainstream theater (that blight upon the landscape, the modern multiplex) BEFORE it wins awards, let alone the new Warner Herzog film (Rescue Dawn)----and I can just see people going "Warner WHO?" what does that say about the abilty of a cinematic master to emerge?

It is the passing of an era. True artists abound--or potential greats. But the media for presenting them,and bolstering their voice, fades with each passing year.
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Old 07-31-2007, 10:30 AM   #7
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Very true. There are only a few living filmmakers right now that I think of as artists first and commercial filmmakers second. Godard (last of the old school?), Wong Kar-Wai, Lynch, Greenaway, Maddin, Von Trier, maybe?

And al of these guys have trouble getting their films seen widely as well.

The upside is that with DVD you are more likely to be able to hunt the films down than in years past, but of course you still won't have the theatrical experience.
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Old 07-31-2007, 02:47 PM   #8
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[QUOTE]Originally posted by If you shout...
[B]Both Cries and Whispers and Fanny and Alexander are two of the most overrated films of the last 40 years; not only aren't they great, but they are also awful. Unwatchably awful.

Well, I consider "Cries and Whispers" to be one of the most powerful films I have ever seen. A piece of complete virtuosity.

And "Fanny and Alexander". Perhaps not his most important work. But his most accessible work in the best meaing of that word. Very generous and full of warmth. And maybe the first piece of "real" cinema I saw way back then in the early eighties. Holds a special place for me.
Did you see the theatrical version or the much longer tv-version? The tv-version is the one to see.
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Old 07-31-2007, 08:45 PM   #9
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[QUOTE]Originally posted by S.A.K
[B]
Quote:
Originally posted by If you shout...
Both Cries and Whispers and Fanny and Alexander are two of the most overrated films of the last 40 years; not only aren't they great, but they are also awful. Unwatchably awful.

Well, I consider "Cries and Whispers" to be one of the most powerful films I have ever seen. A piece of complete virtuosity.

And "Fanny and Alexander". Perhaps not his most important work. But his most accessible work in the best meaing of that word. Very generous and full of warmth. And maybe the first piece of "real" cinema I saw way back then in the early eighties. Holds a special place for me.
Did you see the theatrical version or the much longer tv-version? The tv-version is the one to see.
Both versions of Fanny and Alexander; attempted suicide during the last nine hours of the TV version.

Saw Cries and Whispers on 35mm and was laughing my ass off, by the end, as much due to the tactless, sadistic, and overdone carnage of the film as so that I'd fuckin' have something to do. I could elaborate on all of the ways in which that film fails to do everything it tries so hard to convince you it's doing, rather than actually just doing any of it, but there's no need and this is neither the time nor the place. It's all relative. I never got into The Silence, either, and the critical establishment firmly and pronouncedly disagrees with me, on that one. It's all good.

It's all good if people take something different from a filmmaker or his/her specific works. No matter how many masterpieces or clunkers he made (and nobody can deny that he made a good deal of both), mo matter which films we each deem to be a part of either of those categories, and no matter how questionable his personal politics and actions (he was a Nazi sympathizer, amongst other things), he was still a titan in the world of cinema. Despite his inactivity over the last 25 years, I still feel that I'll miss just knowing that he's there.
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Old 07-31-2007, 10:50 PM   #10
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Wow, this is very sad and loss of an enormous talent. RIP.
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Old 08-01-2007, 01:46 AM   #11
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I agree, Lazarus, but sadly, with DVD it's like the Internet. You have to have seen the film first to be interested in the DVD. Like if you live near a record store that is, like, say, Tower Records and it closes down, sure,you can surf the Net looking for great new music, but is that like =browsing through the shelves at a record store and finding yourself getting into an animated discussion with the person next to you and then finding yourselves arguing at a pub nearby? (even better if you're both single and the evening takes THAT turn? People meet on the NEt and there's great discussion, and allthat, but it's not the same....

Pardon, who are Madden and Wong Kar-wai? Sorry but I really have not heard of them....And funny you should mention David Lynch....I know, he has a unique vision and quite a catalogue but I've always pictured him as borderline mainstream, even with his eccentricities. Sorry, maybe I just can't get over Twin Peaks....

I guess if Lynch is your "borderline" Artiste, than Dino De Laurentis, Quentin Tarantino and Jonathan Demme are mine....

Which leaves the "Seventies Film School Bar Pack" where? You can't deny they had vision....

I'm just wating for the Turkish (or otherwise) filmaker who has the guts to adapt Orhan Pamuk's "Snow"....

Speaking of great works of art, here's a film I run around raving about to people....you've probably seen it though....an Israeli film from the late 90's called "Kadosh" (Sacred) won something at Cannes....forgot the director...if ever a film was hauntingly prophetic, is is this one....to understand Isreal in the current fearful Age, see this film!
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Old 08-01-2007, 02:18 AM   #12
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The 70's film school kids are all for the most part making commerical entertainment. Scorsese is a visionary director, but aside from Kundun he's not making pure cinema.

The Maddin I was referring to is Guy Maddin, and Wong Kar-Wai is a darling of Cannes and the critical set. You should look him up on IMDB, might jog your memory. His best-known works are In the Mood for Love and Chunking Express. The closest I've seen to poetry on film.

I'm not a Lynch fanatic but he definitely seems to be making films for someone other than the mulitplex crowd. There seems to be no consideration of an audience, just the expression of his vision, and I think that's what we're talking about here.
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