Friday, November 18, 2005

Truly Madly Darkly

Well, finished Bergman's "Through A Glass Darkly," a superb dissection of a troubled family at their remote and rustic vacation home on the Swedish coast. Through incisive dialogue and searing acting, we meet a a selfish, artistically failed author, his daughter who's going in and out of mental illness, and his shy and confused son who's sexually coming of age. Daughter's husband, a doctor, stands by, longing and helpless.

It's a moody landscape, physically and emotionally, accentuated by the stark black & white cinematography. After the movie, a succint 90 minute jewel, had faded out, I watched the preview, and was stunned by its literacy, slowness, and the excess of information given (why tell the whole movie?) - I get the feeling that in 1961 American viewers had a longer attention span but that a foreign movie needed a hard sell... Finally, my interest in this film was first piqued by the Rolling Stones' choice to name their first hits album using a play on words of the film's title... "Through The Past, Darkly"

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