Saturday, June 24, 2006

Netflix



I'd seen all the Bergmans available at Netflix as of six months ago, and began going through an Existentialist withdrawal. What better fix than Persona, with the most ethically challenged psychiatric nurse in cinematic history? Bibi and Liv stride around rocky Scandinavian coastline in gorgeous black and white, Ingmar drops disturbing avant-garde camera tricks and montage bits into the mix, and no one lives happier ever after. Absolutely shattering, even on a third viewing.

4 comments:

Seth Anderson said...

I have yet to see it on DVD, but this remains one of my favorite Bergman movies. I'm sure I've seen it half a dozen times, mostly on a big screen.

geoff said...

I love it. It's beautifully horrible. The broken glass scene, the bizarre opening montage, the wonderful monologue of the psychoanalyst--great stuff.

Steven Hart said...

Bibi's monologue about the boys on the beach is amazing. If you ever run across John Simon's book about Bergman, he devotes a great deal of quality space to "Persona."

geoff said...

There are good extras on the Criterion DVD--interviews with Bibi and Liv, and an old interview with Ingmar himself, talking about a sort of nervous breakdown that inspired the film.

The interviewer asks Bibi what she thinks the film means. She's honest, and says basically "I don't know."