4 user 12 critic

Prison (1949)

Fängelse (original title)
A film director tries to create the best film in history, but finds out that human abilities have their limits.


Ingmar Bergman


Ingmar Bergman




Complete credited cast:
Doris Svedlund ... Birgitta Carolina Söderberg
Birger Malmsten ... Thomas
Eva Henning ... Sofi
Hasse Ekman ... Martin Grandé
Stig Olin ... Peter
Irma Christenson ... Linnea
Anders Henrikson ... Paul
Marianne Löfgren ... Mrs. Bohlin
Bibi Lindqvist Bibi Lindqvist ... Anna
Curt Masreliez ... Alf
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Britta Holmberg ... Birgitta's Mother in Dream (voice)
Learn more

More Like This 

Thirst (1949)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

A needy couple in a bad marriage travel back to Stockholm after a trip to Italy. Meanwhile, a widow resists seductions from two different persons - her psychiatrist and a lesbian friend.

Director: Ingmar Bergman
Stars: Eva Henning, Birger Malmsten, Birgit Tengroth
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

A blind musician falls in love with a kindhearted girl. This love begin to confront with his disease and with his music.

Director: Ingmar Bergman
Stars: Mai Zetterling, Birger Malmsten, Olof Winnerstrand
Port of Call (1948)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

A suicidal factory girl out of reformatory school, anxious to escape her overbearing mother, falls in love with a sailor who can't forgive her past.

Director: Ingmar Bergman
Stars: Nine-Christine Jönsson, Bengt Eklund, Mimi Nelson
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

A young love fights against the stupidity and boredom of society.

Director: Ingmar Bergman
Stars: Barbro Kollberg, Birger Malmsten, Gösta Cederlund
To Joy (1950)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Two violinists playing in the same orchestra fall in love and get married, but they can't get along.

Director: Ingmar Bergman
Stars: Maj-Britt Nilsson, Stig Olin, Birger Malmsten
Waiting Women (1952)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

The four wives of four brothers share stories of their marriages as they each wait for their husbands in a small, secluded cottage.

Director: Ingmar Bergman
Stars: Anita Björk, Eva Dahlbeck, Maj-Britt Nilsson
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

A sailor returns to his hometown after 7 years and remembers the dark and the light moments of his past.

Director: Ingmar Bergman
Stars: Holger Löwenadler, Anna Lindahl, Birger Malmsten
Crisis (1946)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

A small-town piano teacher is shocked by the arrival of her foster daughter's real mother, whose young lover soon follows and causes further disruption.

Director: Ingmar Bergman
Stars: Inga Landgré, Stig Olin, Marianne Löfgren
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

After a 15-year marriage, the spouses are going to divorce, but suddenly find out that their feelings have not vanished yet.

Director: Ingmar Bergman
Stars: Eva Dahlbeck, Gunnar Björnstrand, Yvonne Lombard
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

A lonely woman recalls her first love thirteen years prior during a brief summer vacation.

Director: Ingmar Bergman
Stars: Maj-Britt Nilsson, Birger Malmsten, Alf Kjellin
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

The complicated relationships between a circus ringmaster, his estranged wife and his lover.

Director: Ingmar Bergman
Stars: Åke Grönberg, Harriet Andersson, Hasse Ekman
Drama | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5/10 X  

A story of two refugees - wife and husband - from the dictatorship. Their quiet life in a new free country is impossible because of the husband's dark secret.

Director: Ingmar Bergman
Stars: Signe Hasso, Alf Kjellin, Ulf Palme


A movie director is approached by his old math teacher with a great movie idea: the Devil declares that the Earth is hell. The director rejects the idea, but subsequent events in the life of a writer, a friend of the director's, and a young prostitute he loves seem to prove the math teacher's idea. Written by Erik Gregersen <erik@astro.as.utexas.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


INGMAR BERGMAN reflects on life, love, the Devil and immortality...




See all certifications »

Did You Know?


Hasse Ekman's The Girl from the Third Row (1949) was made as a reaction to the dark view of life in this film, wanting to show that the world after all is not as horrible as it might appear. Ekman starred in both. See more »

Crazy Credits

There are no opening titles in this film. An unseen narrator (Hasse Ekman) reads the credits, as well as the title, out loud approximately ten minutes in to the movie. The sole title card is the standard "Slut" (Swedish for "End") that closes the picture. See more »


Referenced in Ammatti: elokuvaohjaaja - Jörn Donner (2013) See more »


Vart ska du gå?
Composed by Alice Tegner (as Alice Tegnér)
Sung by Monica Uddén
See more »

User Reviews

The first Bergman to disappoint
23 November 2010 | by tim-764-291856See all my reviews

An ex Maths teacher announces he's just been released from a lunatic asylum (as you do) to some people making a film. (He used to teach one of them). He says that he has ideas about the Devil. The filmmakers try to adapt those ideas into a screenplay. Apparently they reject those ideas -after making them - for this film presumably.

The meandering narrative seems to explore scenarios that surround some pretty miserable and uninteresting people. I think I read that it's Bergman's first film to look solely at mild horror and the place of the Devil, both in philosophy, film and in folklore. Suicide, alcoholism, prostitution, even drowning babies born to the under-aged get limp, clumsy and unconvincing treatment.

It's pretty impossible to follow and no doubt spoilt by knowing what gems came later from the Master of Darkness.

Best thing to come out of it was a line that I've slightly altered - "Life Itself is a terminal illness "

10 of 22 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 4 user reviews »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.






Release Date:

4 July 1962 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Devil's Wanton See more »


Box Office


SEK240,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Terrafilm See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

Contribute to This Page

Free Movies and TV Shows You Can Watch Now

On IMDb TV, you can catch Hollywood hits and popular TV series at no cost. Select any poster below to play the movie, totally free!

Browse free movies and TV series

Recently Viewed