TSPDT Greatest Films #707 The Virgin Spring (Ingmar Bergman, 1960)
Bergman's films are pieces of pure Cinema. For some contemporary viewers his style may tend to be too theatrical and dramatic. The acting is, in fact, too much and that's a thing I really had troubles to get into his films. The Virgin Spring is the tenth film from Ingmar Bergman I've seen and one of the good ones. In my opinion, Wild Strawberries, The Seventh Seal, Persona, Cries and Whispers and even Fanny and Alexander are far better works.
Bergman's filmography is far too dense to name my favorite (maybe Fanny and Alexander... tomorrow it would be another one...). I didn't even seen half of the films he has done.
The Virgin Spring is the story of a farmer's family in Medieval time. His daughter is his pride and he loves her very much. But on her way to a distant church she is raped and killed by goat herders. Those goat herders ask for a roof and food for the night to the peasant parents of their victim.
The themes of The Virgin Spring are universal; virginity, rape, murder, revenge, good vs. bad. The story is set in Medieval time but could happen in any time period. It reminded me the film currently in theaters by Daniel Grou a.k.a. Podz Les 7 jours du talion.
I liked The Virgin Spring as a piece of the history of Cinema but I would go back to The Seventh Seal or Wild Strawberries way before watching again The Virgin Spring if I want to go back to rewatch Bergman's films...
A Film Retrospective by Michaël Parent