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Autumn Sonata

Ingmar Bergman
France, West Germany, Sweden, UK 1978 / 99’
The Serpent's Egg Fanny and Alexander

The past is a sensitive, painful place that is better left untouched, since it can start to bleed at any time. Eva, an older woman with a tidy life, succumbs to sentimental temptation and decides to visit her mother, a woman she hasn't seen in many years. Her mother is a world-class pianist, a star whose face adorns posters, but with this, she is incorrigibly, even pathologically egotistical. Although their meeting starts out cordially enough, it turns into an extremely unpleasant conversation filled with mutual accusations. Words are spoken that make it impossible to keep up the pretense that this is a healthy relationship. Bergman's Autumn Sonata is a minimalistic drama overloaded with negative emotions. The film features an acting duel between two cinematic icons, Liv Ullmann and Ingrid Bergman-in the case of Bergman, this was her last role on the big screen.

Piotr Mirski


New York Film Critics Circle Awards 1978 – Best Actress; Golden Globes 1979 – Best Foreign Film; Bodil Awards 1979 – Best European Film; David di Donatello Awards 1979 – Best Foreign Actress; Italian National Syndicate of Film Journalists 1979 – Best Foreign Director

Ingmar Bergman

Ingmar Bergman was one of the most important filmmakers in the history of artistic cinema. Born in 1918, he died in 2007 on the very same day that another legend passed away, Michelangelo Antonioni. He began his career in the film industry by correcting screenplays for others. He gained directorial experience as an assistant to Alf Sjöberg on Torment, for which he wrote the script. He made his directorial debut with Crisis. He gained international fame thanks to Smiles of a Summer Night, and then cemented his position with The SeventhSeal and Wild Strawberries, filmed shortly thereafter. The coming years and decades brought him even more success. He regularly worked with cinematographer Sven Nykvist and actors such as Harriet Andersson, Bibi Andersson, Liv Ullmann and Max von Sydow. He also worked in the theater.

Selected filmography

1946 Kryzys / Kris / Crisis

1953 Wakacje z Moniką / Sommaren med Monika / Summer with Monika

1955 Uśmiech nocy / Sommarnattens leende / Smiles of a Summer Night

1957 Siódma pieczęć / Det sjunde inseglet / The Seventh Seal

1957 Tam, gdzie rosną poziomki / Smultronstället / Wild Strawberries

1960 Źródło / Jungfrukällan / The Virgin Spring

1961 Jak w zwierciadle / Såsom i en spegel / Through a Glass Darkly

1966 Persona

1972 Szepty i krzyki / Viskningar och rop / Cries and Whispers

1973 Sceny z życia małżeńskiego / Scener ur ett äktenskap / Scenes from a Marriage (TV)

1977 Jajo węża / The Serpent's Egg

1978 Jesienna sonata / Höstsonaten / Autumn Sonata

1983 Fanny i Aleksander / Fanny och Alexander / Fanny and Alexander (TV)

2003 Sarabanda / Saraband (TV)

Cast & Crew

director Ingmar Bergman
screenplay Ingmar Bergman
cinematography Sven Nykvist
editing Sylvia Ingemarsson
music Frans Brüggen, Anner Bylsma, Claude Genetay, Käbi Laretei
cast Liv Ullmann, Ingrid Bergman, Lena Nyman, Halvar Björk
producer Katinka Faragó
production Personafilm, Filmédis, Incorporated Television Company, Suede Film
sales Ambasada Szwecji
language Swedish, English
colouration colour