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The Silence

“The third film in his ‘Faith Trilogy,’ The Silence offers a sexually frank depiction of two emotionally conjoined sisters who, while traveling in a strange European country, begin a tortured struggle of separation. Ester (Ingrid Thulin), a lesbian intellectual, is physically attracted to her sister Anna (Gunnel Lindblom), herself the sexually vibrant mother of a 10-year-old boy. While the carefree Anna indulges in casual sex, her son briefly falls in with a troupe of dwarves who inhabit their otherwise deserted hotel, while Ester wastes away from alcohol and tuberculosis. Bleak, dense, puzzling and heavy with symbolism, certain sexual scenes were profoundly shocking at the time—all the more so, perhaps, for the unadorned frankness with which they were presented. Impeccably interpreted by two of the best actresses in Bergman’s impressive stable, this is a dark, passionate, elusive and disturbing work.”—The Holt Foreign Film Guide. In Swedish with English subtitles.

Genres: Drama

Other Films by Ingmar Bergman

Summer with Monika

Originally regarded as an erotic exploitation film, Monika enjoyed reappraisal as Bergman gained international recognition. Here he first articulates his recognizable psychological affinity with the ocean shore in a story of naïve desire and doomed romance. Shy, bourgeois Harry (Lars Ekborg) and the sultry, restless Monika (Harriet Andersson), escape their dreary lives in Stockholm and

The Virgin Spring

Bergman returns to the medieval Sweden of The Seventh Seal with this decidedly modern parable based on a 14th-century religious folk tale pitting Christian revenge against pagan magic. Töre (Max Von Sydow), a devoted father, leads a quiet, dignified family life. His love for his daughter Karin (Birgitta Pettersson) is affectionate but overbearing, and his

Smiles of A Summer Night

The inspiration for Woody Allen’s A Midsummer Night’s Sex Comedy and Steven Sondheim’s A Little Night Music, Bergman’s Smiles is an erotic, nostalgic jab at upper-class sexual repression and marital dysfunction. At a turn-of-the-century country estate, eight men and women—invited for a summer weekend—embark on frenzied rounds of sexual intrigue and deception as they variously

Autumn Sonata

Bergman’s only collaboration with Swedish film legend Ingrid Bergman, Autumn Sonata serves as a complimentary, yet more melancholy parallel to Wild Strawberries. Charlotte (Bergman), a professional musician, examines her life from the contemplative perch of old age. After having watched a lover die, she is reunited with her neglected and estranged daughter. Eva (Liv Ullmann)

Shame

Musicians Jan (Max Von Sydow) and Eva (Liv Ullmann), take refuge in a remote farmhouse hoping to escape the coming horrors of a civil war. There they face Bergman’s classic themes of personal isolation and fatalism, set in the context of political violence. Shame finds the director trying to make sense of postwar Europe in