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Winter Light (1963)
"Nattvardsgästerna" (original title)

 -  Drama  -  5 April 1963 (USA)
8.1
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Ratings: 8.1/10 from 11,311 users  
Reviews: 61 user | 40 critic

A small town priest struggles with his faith.

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Airs Thu. Dec. 04, 3:15 AM on TCM

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Title: Winter Light (1963)

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
Gunnel Lindblom ...
...
Allan Edwall ...
Algot Frövik, Sexton
Kolbjörn Knudsen ...
Knut Aronsson, Warden
Olof Thunberg ...
Fredrik Blom, Organist
Elsa Ebbesen ...
Magdalena Ledfors, Widow
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Storyline

On a cold winter's Sunday, the pastor of a small rural church (Tomas Ericsson) performs service for a tiny congregation; though he is suffering from a cold and a severe crisis of faith. After the service, he attempts to console a fisherman (Jonas Persson) who is tormented by anxiety, but Tomas can only speak about his own troubled relationship with God. A school teacher (Maerta Lundberg) offers Tomas her love as consolation for his loss of faith. But Tomas resists her love as desperately as she offers it to him. This is the second in Bergman's trilogy of films dealing with man's relationship with God. Written by <amanderik@aol.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

faith | pastor | winter | priest | suicide | See All (9) »

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

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Release Date:

5 April 1963 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Les communiants  »

Filming Locations:

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

A considerable amount of the scenes had to be re-shot due to technical problems with sound and film stock. See more »

Goofs

In the vestry (or office) to the side of the church, as Tomas realises that he believes life is more understandable without the presence of God, the light through the window behind him intensifies. Assuming the church building has an east-west orientation (as churches tend to do), the light is coming from a northerly direction. Yet, when he later re-enters the church proper (and collapses by the altar rail), the sun is clearly visible, low in the sky, through the window at the opposite (southern) side of the building. See more »

Quotes

Algot Frövik, Sexton: The passion of Christ, his suffering... Wouldn't you say the focus on his suffering is all wrong?
Tomas Ericsson, Pastor: What do you mean?
Algot Frövik, Sexton: This emphasis on physical pain. It couldn't have been all that bad. It may sound presumptuous of me - but in my humble way, I've suffered as much physical pain as Jesus. And his torments were rather brief. Lasting some four hours, I gather? I feel that he was tormented far worse on an other level. Maybe I've got it all wrong. But just think of Gethsemane, Vicar. Christ's disciples...
[...]
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Connections

Referenced in Ingmar Bergman on Life and Work (1998) See more »

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User Reviews

 
One of the greatest!
30 March 2005 | by (Russia - Sweden) – See all my reviews

I watched this film the other night, and this struck me as perhaps the most profound and "real" movie that I have ever seen. It deals with the silence of god, and meaning of life. With the brilliant photo by Sven Nykvist, the surroundings comes alive unlike most other movies with color! If you've ever lived in that scenery (cold pine-forested northerly countries) It appears almost as if it were in color, as if one is there at that moment.

Needless to say, the actors makes fantastic performances.

I find it pointless to say much about the plot, it is well summarized on this site, it is also a very personal movie to watch and therefore any type of "analysis" that is revealed to the viewer before he or she has seen the movie, may interfere with their own personal view on things.

Truly a masterpiece among movies, completely free from unimportant elements, a clear, uncompromising questioning of ones faith in god and life.

10/10


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