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The Virgin Spring (1960) More at IMDbPro »Jungfrukällan (original title)

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Release Date:
14 November 1960 (USA) See more »
A kind but pampered beautiful young virgin and her family's pregnant and jealous servant set out to deliver candles to church, but only one returns from events that transpire in the woods along the way. Full summary » | Full synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
Won Oscar. Another 4 wins & 2 nominations See more »
(18 articles)
Ingmar Bergman A Legend By Time
 (From Cinelinx. 23 February 2015, 10:52 AM, PST)

New on Video: ‘L’Avventura’
 (From SoundOnSight. 11 December 2014, 7:34 AM, PST)

Full Disclosure 2014 The Directors Cut: Ingmar Bergman
 (From Twitch. 27 July 2014, 3:30 AM, PDT)

User Reviews:
Faith and Human Nature See more (75 total) »


  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Max von Sydow ... Töre
Birgitta Valberg ... Märeta
Gunnel Lindblom ... Ingeri

Birgitta Pettersson ... Karin
Axel Düberg ... Thin Herdsman
Tor Isedal ... Mute Herdsman
Allan Edwall ... Beggar
Ove Porath ... Boy
Axel Slangus ... Bridge Keeper
Gudrun Brost ... Frida
Oscar Ljung ... Simon
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Tor Borong ... Farm-hand
Leif Forstenberg ... Farm-hand

Directed by
Ingmar Bergman 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Ulla Isaksson 

Produced by
Ingmar Bergman .... producer (uncredited)
Allan Ekelund .... producer (uncredited)
Original Music by
Erik Nordgren 
Cinematography by
Sven Nykvist 
Film Editing by
Oscar Rosander 
Production Design by
P.A. Lundgren 
Costume Design by
Marik Vos-Lundh  (as Marik Vos)
Makeup Department
Börje Lundh .... makeup artist
Production Management
Carl-Henry Cagarp .... production manager
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Lenn Hjortzberg .... assistant director
Art Department
Karl-Arne Bergman .... property master
Sound Department
Evald Andersson .... sound effects
Staffan Dalin .... sound
Aaby Wedin .... sound
Camera and Electrical Department
Rolf Holmquist .... assistant camera
Other crew
Ulla Furås .... script girl
Crew verified as complete

Production CompaniesDistributors

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Jungfrukällan" - Sweden (original title)
See more »
89 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Argentina:18 | Australia:M | Canada:13+ (Quebec) | Finland:K-18 (1966) | Finland:(Banned) (1960) | France:-16 | Germany:16 | Norway:16 (1960) (cut) | Singapore:M18 | South Korea:15 | Sweden:15 | UK:X (original rating) (cut) | UK:15 (re-rating) (1994) | USA:Unrated | West Germany:18 (original rating)
Filming Locations:

Did You Know?

von Sydow, the father, was/is, in real life, less than 10 years older than Pettersson, the daughter.See more »
Revealing mistakes: If you look closely when the boy is placing dirt on Karin's body, you can see her torso move as the actress breathes (even though she was supposed to be dead).See more »
Ingeri:[First lines] God Odin come... God Odin come... God Odin come...See more »
Movie Connections:
Featured in The 79th Annual Academy Awards (2007) (TV)See more »


How much sex, violence, and profanity are in this movie?
Is 'The Virgin Spring' based on a book?
Is the original ballad available online?
See more »
11 out of 15 people found the following review useful.
Faith and Human Nature, 8 December 2009
Author: jzappa from Cincinnati, OH, United States

The Virgin Spring is a film so graceful, subtle and omniscient that when we experience powerfully emotional moments, we haven't even expected them, and when we have, it's already hit us. With every detail of every department, the result is utter simplicity, utter docility, no fluctuation in the face of whatever brutality or emotional quakes, making them all that much more profoundly moving. The story reveals and illustrates the characters up until the fatal flaw causes the end of the movie to be inevitable, but we never saw that particular element that way, because everything is utterly natural.

Its pitch-perfect genuine bloom is the effect of the film being pared down to its barest intentions. And these are not only fundamental questions, but fundamental questions in a time and place in history where needs and desires were purely fundamental. The characters, existing in medieval Sweden, could have no concept of how complicated human beings' intentions could be as they are in modern times. It begins with a prosperous Christian whose daughter, Karin played by Birgitta Pattersson, is appointed to bring candles to the church. This is a big deal around here. Karin is accompanied by her pregnant foster sister, Ingeri played by Gunnel Lindblom, who secretly worships a Norse pagan God. What conflict! What happens from there, I will not say. But anywhere you may read about this film you will see that it was the basis for Wes Craven's exploitation flick The Last House on the Left, but in that exploitation of a genuine bloom of grace, the ensuing turning points in the plot achieve the exact opposite effect in every way I've explained. When you see The Virgin Spring, you will be presented with people who search for the same answers and consolations most of us still seek today. Even if a viewer would sooner find themselves watching Craven's film than anything by Ingmar Bergman, once they would get around to The Virgin Spring, they'd find themselves subjected to an unexpected, and wholly memorable, experience more rare than the later film.

Max Von Sydow's performance is truly unforgettable in every sense of the word, burning every line of his ultimate soliloquy into you with an impact lasting longer than the movie or the day you see it. He is a giant, unabashedly masculine yet incapable of artifice. Even so, he stands out no more than any other actor, all of whom beautifully share the screen with one another, which emboldens the impact of where his character goes.

Ulla Isakkson's story yields a multitude of moral examinations in our minds. There are certain peculiar characters who have no human sympathy and are unashamed of a laundry list of barbarities. Bergman shows the Christian Orthodox family spending every waking moment preoccupied with purity, altruism and decency in the eyes of the god they passionately look to with faith that the world they live in is inherently good and just. Their concept of evil is the notion of a Pagan god. How are they to act when crossing paths with the former set of characters?

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Was the boy bad??? swan_angel
why did they sent her alone? mohbiny
why did they sent her alone? mohbiny
God and Bergman films vespajason
Anyone speak swedish?? mpg138
Females 45+!!!! teardrop423
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