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 who is tormented by anxiety, but Tomas can only speak about his own troubled relationship with God. A school teacher 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.
CAST & CREW
Director of Photography
Stig Flodin, Brian Wikström
Gunnar Björnstrand, Ingrid Thulin, Max von Sydow, Gunnel Lindblom.
Born in Uppsala, to a Lutheran minister, Bergman grew up surrounded by religious imagery and discussion. Bergman attended Stockholm University and became interested in theater, and later in cinema. His films usually dealt with existential questions about mortality, loneliness, and faith; they were also usually direct and not overtly stylized. Persona, an avant-garde work and one of Bergman's most famous films, is unusual among Bergman's films. Bergman was one of the acknowledged masters of modern cinema. His films are representative of the artistic, and sometimes non-linear storytelling techniques of European cinema in contrast to Hollywood, stressing the visual nature of the medium over more traditional plotting. During his early period, he worked exclusively in black and white. Some of his most loved files come from this period, including Sawdust and Tinsel (1955), Wild Strawberries and The Seventh Seal (both 1957), the latter two are still recognized as early masterpieces. Through a Glass Darkly, Winter Light, and The Silence are generally considered a trilogy, (although Bergman disputes it) revolving around the existential themes of the meaningless of modern life and “God’s silence.” Bergman’s seeming obsession with the death of God was best received not in his homeland of Sweden, which was already a post-Christian society, but in America, where his films became very popular in art houses and especially on college campuses.
Crisis (1946), It Rains on Our Love (1946), A Ship to India (1947), Music in Darkness (1948), Port of Call (1948), Prison (1949), Thirst (1949), This Can't Happen Here (1950), To Joy (1950), Summerplay (1951), Waiting Women (1952), Sunset of a Clown (1953), Summer with Monika (1953), A Lesson in Love (1954), Dreams (1955), Smiles of a Summer Night (1955), The Seventh Seal (1957), Wild Strawberries (1957), The Magician (1958), Brink of Life (1958), The Devil's Eye (1960), The Virgin Spring (1960), Through a Glass Darkly (1961), The Silence (1963), Winter Light (1963), All These Women (1964), Persona (1966), Stimulantia (segment Daniel, 1967), Shame (1968), The Rite (1968), Hour of the Wolf (1968), The Passion (1969), The Touch (1971), Cries and Whispers (1973), Scenes from a Marriage (1973), Face to Face (1975), The Magic Flute (1975), The Serpent's Egg (1977), Autumn Sonata (1978), From the Life of the Marionettes (1980), Fanny and Alexander (1982), Karin's Face (1986, doc.), Saraband (2003).