The Queen of the Night offers her daughter Pamina to Tamino, but he has to bring her back from her father and priest Sarastro. She gives a magic flute to Tamino and magic bells to the bird ...
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Marianne, some thirty years after divorcing Johan, decides to visit her ex-husband at his summer home. She arrives in the middle of a family drama between Johan's son from another marriage and his granddaughter.
A sensitive exploration of the tragic irony of the psychiatrist suffering with mental illness. Dr. Jenny Isaksson is a psychiatrist married to another psychiatrist; both are successful in ... See full summary »
Inventor Carl Åkerblom is a rosy-cheeked 54 year-old admirer of Franz Schubert - and a patient in the psychiatric ward of Akademiska Hospital in Uppsala, after having attempted to beat to ... See full summary »
Rational, exacting, and self-controlled theater director, Henrik Vogler, often stays after rehearsal to think and plan. On this day, Anna comes back, ostensibly looking for a bracelet. She ... See full summary »
Made during Bergman's tax-related exile in Germany, the film continues the story of Katarina and Peter EGermann, the feuding, childless, professional couple who appear in one episode of "... See full summary »
While traveling in caravan through the country of Sweden, one member of the decadent Alberti Circus tells the owner and ringmaster Albert Johansson a sad story about the clown Frost: seven ... See full summary »
Andreas, a man struggling with the recent demise of his marriage and his own emotional isolation, befriends a married couple also in the midst of psychological turmoil. In turn he meets ... See full summary »
It's late nineteenth century Sweden. Middle aged lawyer Fredrik Egerman and his nineteen year old current wife Anne Egerman's two-year marriage has not yet been consummated. Fredrik wants ... See full summary »
A judge in an unnamed country interviews three actors, together and singly, provoking them while investigating a pornographic performance for which they may face a fine. Their relationships... See full summary »
The devil has a stye in his eye, caused by the purity of a vicar's daughter. To get rid of it, he sends Don Juan up from hell to seduce the 20 year old Britt-Marie and to rob her of her ... See full summary »
The Queen of the Night offers her daughter Pamina to Tamino, but he has to bring her back from her father and priest Sarastro. She gives a magic flute to Tamino and magic bells to the bird hunter Papageno, who follows Tamino and wants to find a wife. The duo travels in a journey of love and knowledge. Written by
Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Some opera-buff acquaintances of mine have called Ingmar Bergman's movie of "The Magic Flute" the only good opera film ever made. While I don't know enough about opera to be able to accurately judge that, this movie is certainly a delightful experience. Sung in Swedish by a cast of photogenic Scandinavians, the film both looks and sounds wonderful.
With its fairy-tale plot and passages of spoken dialogue in addition to singing, "The Magic Flute" is already a very accessible opera. Bergman accentuates this by taking an unpretentious "Opera for Everyone" approach, exemplified by his close-up shots of audience members' faces as the overture plays. His production mostly has an 18th-century rococo/ Neoclassical look, though there are a few jarringly modern touches, such as writhing dancers in the last scene. Other than that, this seems a pretty faithful (if shortened) version of the opera that captures its comedy as well as its serious themes.
Mozart's music is both gorgeous and character-appropriate: lyrical arias for aristocratic lovers Tamino and Pamina, powerful coloratura for the vengeful Queen of the Night, folksy melodies for the bird-catcher Papageno. Papageno, a lovable Everyman type, is probably my favorite character in the opera, and Hakan Hagegard does the role justice. Ingmar Bergman's movies are known for their focus on human psychology, and even though "The Magic Flute" is a fantasy, the cast members make their actions believable. They do not just stand and sing like divas; they become tangible human beings.
This collaboration across the centuries between two great artists, Mozart and Bergman, yielded a lovely result. Highly recommended for novice opera-watchers and serious opera buffs alike--though I'm sure many opera fans have already seen this treat of a movie.
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