8.1/10
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Nattvardsgästerna (1963)

Not Rated | | Drama | 5 April 1963 (USA)
A small town priest struggles with his faith.

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
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...
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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 (12) »

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Drama

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

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Details

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Release Date:

5 April 1963 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Les communiants  »

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Technical Specs

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Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In the scene where Tomas is talking to Märta, after Tomas has been talking to Jonas about losing his faith, a drawing on the wall to the right of Märta head can be seen depicting Death holding a chessboard - a reference to Bergmann earlier film 'The Seventh Seal'. 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

Tomas Ericsson, Pastor: I had this fleeting hope... That everything wouldn't turn out to be illusions, dreams and lies.
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Connections

Featured in The Story of Film: An Odyssey: European New Wave (2011) See more »

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User Reviews

Keep some hot coffee or tea nearby.
8 November 2005 | by (Ronn Ives/FUTURES Antiques, Norfolk, VA.) – See all my reviews

"Winter Light" (Swedish, 1962): Just prepare yourself. Bergman is at his depressive best here. If you've ever lived in an environment that is perpetually cold, wet, and gray, you'll understand. If not, well, this film will illustrate it for you. A preacher, in serious depression himself, is losing his flock. His flock has rampant depression too. He tries to help, but it's useless. He starts looking for answers from them. No one has answers. Things happen. Nothing happens. It's the same old thing today, and tomorrow. This film requires patience. Expect no action. Even a scene change begins to seem like excitement – which is exactly what Bergman wanted for you. One scene, in which a major character "narrates" a letter she wrote to the preacher, is amazing. With a blank background, she stares into the lens of the camera, and talks "at" you – for pages. What a gutsy thing to do in a MOVING PICTURE. Avoid this film if you want more than thinking and feeling as results.


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