1001 Flicks

Regularly updated blog charting the most important films of the last 104 years.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

378. Såsom i en Spegel (Through a Glass Darkly) (1961)

Directed By Ingmar Bergman


A family of four (Father, son, daughter and daughter's husband) reunite at a summer's house in Sweden and everything seems fine and happy... well the daughter is suffering from mental illness and in the space of 24 hours all goes to shit.


If there is anything that makes all of Bergman's films a joy to watch it is just how great the acting is. Here you have a cast consisting solely of four people, but then you need no more than that to explore the gamut of human emotions.

So acting is flawless here, but the directing is also amazing, with an interplay of light and shadow which is truly beautiful, just look at the play scene or the scene inside the wrecked boat.

Then the plot is not exactly uplifting but it is also not completely a downer behind all the disaster pervading the family there is a lot of love going on there, of all kinds, and some of it misplaced or slightly self-interested but there is a sense of all the characters caring for each other deeply, but then it is the superb acting that makes it all the more believable they act like a family because these are are actors which have been working together for a while, isolated in the island of Faro, the intimacy of a cast of four really translates to the interpersonal relations on screen. Great stuff.

Final Grade



From Wikipedia:

The spider god may be an allusion to Dostoevsky's character Svidrigailov in Crime and Punishment who wonders of the afterlife, "But what if there are only spiders there, or something like that?" Karin’s reaction to the wallpaper in the attic may also be taken as an allusion to Charlotte Perkins Gilman’ short story, “The Yellow Wallpaper.”



  • At 4:48 PM, Blogger Pour of Tor said…

    It is true that now I cannot teach "The Yellow Wallpaper" to my Intro to Literature classes without evoking this horrifying, stunning scene. Next year I think I will actually show it to them.


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