While waiting for the night rehearsal of the ballet Swan Lake, the lonely twenty-eight year-old ballerina Marie receives a diary through the mail. She travels by ferry to an island nearby ... See full summary »
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Gertrud is being abandoned by her husband after 20 years of marriage. Offended and unhappy she leaves her home and rents a room. The landlady's son is drawn to her and tries to help her out of the loneliness.
While waiting for the night rehearsal of the ballet Swan Lake, the lonely twenty-eight year-old ballerina Marie receives a diary through the mail. She travels by ferry to an island nearby Stockholm, where she recalls her first love Henrik. Thirteen years ago, while traveling to spend her summer vacation with her aunt Elisabeth and her uncle Erland, Marie meets Henrik in the ferry and sooner they fall in love for each other. They spend summer vacation together when a tragedy separates them and Marie builds a wall affecting her sentimental life. Written by
Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Bergman's films are always interesting to look at, and this one is no exception. Some of the film's best visuals include a bleak white sky that only a black silhouette of the protagonist can be made out walking against, and a couple of excellent montages: one being the opening shots of slight movements in clouds, in a river and of rubbish on a footpath; the other being a montage of steam, skies and water as a boat sails along. Bergman also pays a lot of attention to sound here too, and in particular there is something rhythmic about the chugging boat sounds, and these sounds can be heard at times throughout the film even when the boat is not visible on screen. Silence, such as at the doctor's office, is also distributed well throughout.
The directing work in this early Bergman film is on par with some of his best direction. His screenplay is however well below par. It is one of his least challenging scripts - a simple tale of love between two young persons with none of the philosophy or analysis about how human beings function that make most of his films so interesting. It is well made, but often nothing more than sentimental fluff. The stop animation work is an awkward inclusion too and the film is full of unimportant events, such as the ups and downs of the ballet, that really have absolutely nothing to do with the story at hand. It is not one of Bergman's best films by far, but still a good sign of things to come from him, and fairly pleasant viewing. It is sort of similar to 'Wild Strawberries', and therefore it is rather amusing to hear the main character ask her lover whether he wants to pick some wild strawberries with her!
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