Three women in a maternity ward reveal their lives and intimate thoughts to each other while in a maternity ward together, where they face the choice of keeping their babies or offering them for adoption.
Somewhat one-sided and sometimes melodramatic portrait of a doomed marriage, this still has it share of lovely moments, not least of which is the on-screen performance of great classical music by the orchestra that both protagonists are part of.
While their romance starts sweetly, Stig rapidly turns into a hateful character, his failure to reach stardom as a solo musician translated into taking out his frustrations on his sweet wife, and coldly having an affair to counter his feelings of impotence and self-loathing.
While an interesting portrait of an artist's own ambition standing in the way of being better at their craft (it's Stig's need for approval and outward success that doesn't allow him to really thrown himself, body and soul into his music – or his marriage), Marta his wife just comes off as too perfect a martyr.
There are moments where the acting is very strong, and some of the photography is lovely, but the film just feels a bit like the character of Stig – too self-conscious and too sure about who is right and wrong. Still, there are lots of hints of Bergman's genius to come, and it's well worth seeing for those.
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