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Olof lives alone on his family's farm after the death of his mother. Unable to read and write, he is dependent on his younger friend, Erik, who helps him in the afternoons. Once a sailor, Erik brags of having known hundreds of women. Out of the blue, Olof advertises in the local paper for a young lady housekeeper, and Ellen, a middle-class city woman, arrives to take over the house and, as the summer goes on, Olof's heart and Erik's desire as well. Written by
L.H. Wong <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Splendid film about the sadness of love and the confinement and shame of illiteracy
This film touched my heart. Set in rural Sweden in the mid '50s and beautifully telling the tale of shy, reluctant love, the jealousy between friends and the claustrophobic agony of illiteracy, the film leaves you with the hope that just sometimes the innocent might prevail over the cunning. As a bonus, on top of the psychological subtlety that Nutley handles so well, you are also treated to the beauty of a landscape still remembered and missed.
Nutley elegantly suggests outcomes of actions without overstating it, like when he lets one of his characters mention that he signed on as a crew member of Andrea Doria which went under in 1956, the year described in the film.
Paradoxically, no Swedish director has ever succeeded in describing the soul of the Swedish people or painting the beauty of the Swedish countryside as brilliantly or lovingly, for that matter - as Colin Nutley has.
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