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Saraband (rewatch)

Posted by martinteller on April 30, 2010

10 months ago, I started revisiting Bergman, watching one movie per week.  And now, I’m finally at the finish.  It’s been a terrific journey.  A few not quite as good as I remembered, a number that were better than I remembered, and a lot of masterpieces along the way.  And we end with his final masterpiece, a triumphant last return to cinema after a long absence.  Although Liv Ullmann was the primary character in Scenes from a Marriage, here she takes on more of a casual observer/narrator role, despite having more scenes than anyone else in the film.  She’s a witness to a family severely damaged by the loss of a loved one… whose recurring image is tellingly that of Bergman’s deceased wife, Ingrid.  I do wish Ullmann had a little more prominence in this movie, as she’s my favorite member of the cast.  Nonetheless, it’s a beautiful and often very powerful work.  It’s funny how I remembered it only as a series of conversations plus the bookends, and forgot the number of unusual inserts that occur.  They make for some of the film’s most intriguing and striking moments.  Rating: 9


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