Pin It
Favorite

DVD Review-Wild Strawberries 

by Marty Demarest


Seeing Wild Strawberries again, 45 years after its initial release, it's hard not to think of the works of art that have followed it, treading in the footsteps of Ingmar Bergman's haunting masterpiece. Woody Allen used the film as inspiration for his own Deconstructing Harry, and Michael Chabon's novel Wonder Boys gently nudged Bergman's themes into postmodernity. However, neither of those works -- as accomplished as they both are -- reverberates with the emotional resonance of Wild Strawberries.


Relating the tale of an aged Stockholm professor who sets out in his car to receive an honorary degree, the film's true story emerges as he confronts the life he has led, and begins to explore the workings his subconscious has had on his existence. Confronted with the questions of decency, mercy and pity as they have been answered in his character's past, Swedish actor and director Victor Sjostrom gives a brilliant performance depicting a man's struggle with time as he moves towards his death, unable to alter what has already happened.


But wrapped around this dark and internal tale is one of Bergman's most lyrical, vivid, and -- dare we say it when regarding the famously dour existentialist? -- humorous works. The presentation leaps gracefully from grippingly presented dialogue, in which a character's silent face tells more than any words, to dream sequences and flashbacks. Ultimately, the film resembles nothing more than a full portrait of the main character's mind.


The Criterion Collection's DVD presentation of Wild Strawberries makes no greater contributions than the flawless digital transfer of Bergman's rapturous black-and-white cinematography and a new translation presented in subtitles. But for cinephiles for whom the film itself isn't sufficient, a commentary from film scholar Peter Cowie, a documentary about Bergman and some behind-the-scenes still photos round out a particularly classy presentation of an immortal film.

  • Pin It

Latest in News

  • Rich Man, Poor Men
  • Rich Man, Poor Men

    Can the wealthiest U.S. president ever help the poorest U.S. citizens?
    • Jan 18, 2017
  • La Résistance
  • La Résistance

    Michael Moore, Congressional Democrats and local progressives: How they are resisting Donald Trump's agenda
    • Jan 18, 2017
  • Must-See TV?
  • Must-See TV?

    Alternatives to the inauguration (and how to make watching more fun if you have to)
    • Jan 18, 2017
  • More »

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Today | Thu | Fri | Sat | Sun | Mon | Tue
Organize Your Finances

Organize Your Finances @ North Spokane Library

Thu., Jan. 19, 6-7 p.m.

All of today's events | Staff Picks

More by Marty Demarest

  • The Cowboy's Cowboy
  • The Cowboy's Cowboy

    A Canadian sings about the life —  not just the lifestyle — of the new West
    • May 15, 2013
  • Completing the Trilogy
  • Completing the Trilogy

    Mass Effect has finally arrived
    • May 23, 2012
  • Minecraft
  • Minecraft

    Adventure and survival too often give way to mindless crafts in this building-block simulator.
    • Feb 8, 2012
  • More »

Most Commented On

  • Thanks, Obama

    The legacy of the 44th President goes far beyond the election of the 45th
    • Dec 29, 2016
  • One Free Shave

    Donald Trump might have merited a honeymoon with voters had he managed his transition better
    • Dec 29, 2016
  • More »

Top Tags in
News & Comment

scandal


scandals


Comment


Briefs


green zone


Readers also liked…

  • The <i>Real</i> Rachel Dolezal
  • The Real Rachel Dolezal

    The story goes far beyond just a white woman portraying herself as black
    • Jun 17, 2015
  • Hopeless for Heroin
  • Hopeless for Heroin

    As heroin deaths continue to rise in Washington state, what can a parent do to save a child from the depths of addiction?
    • Jul 29, 2015

© 2017 Inlander
Website powered by Foundation