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Entries in Cries and Whispers (3)

Wednesday
Jul 30 2014

Bergman's Ghosts

This is TFE's late entry into the Hit Me With Your Best Shot gallery of Cries and Whisper's finest moments

Ingmar Bergman will never die.We need not be literal about this.Yes,the great Swedish auteur passed on in 2007 but his rich inimitable* filmography is not of the corporeal so much as its of the spirit (however despairing) or at least the deep recesses of the psyche,if you'd care to differentiate.In collaboration with fellow geniuses cinematographer Sven Nykvist and actress Liv Ullman he captured many of the greatest close-ups in the whole of cinematic history.In a Bergman/Nykvist/Ullman close-up it's not the eyes that are the window to the soul so much as the faceasthe soul,fully visible even when its bathed in shadow.

Yet even revealed it's still unknowable.

best shot

When I first sawCries and Whispersin college while pursuing my own self-guided lessons in film history,I was astonished by the film's signature move.Each of the  three "living"characters,if you can call them that,the sisters Maria (Liv Ullman) and Karin (Ingrid Thulin) and the family's housekeeper Anna (Kari Sylwan) are given bookend close-ups.These closeups house memories or dreams or scenes from their point of view.The closeups fade to red and are accompanied by indecipherable whispering.The impression isn't as simple as a haunting;Agnes (Harriest Anderson),who isn't afforded this expressive close-up luxury is still alive when this first starts happening.This unfathomably perfect artistic motif has already removed the film from the literal by the time Agnes dies at which point the film becomes even more incredible,disturbing and profound.What is haunting these women?Any answer feels correct whether you've imagined regrets,the abyss of death,life itself,or the living nightmare of toxic relationships.

See everyone else's choices for "Best Shot"here...

For completists of if you're curious I've included the two runner up shots I considered as "Best"after the jump

Click to read more ...亚博足彩app

Tuesday
Jul 29 2014

Visual Index ~ "Cries and Whisper"Best Shot(s)

Tuesday night meansBest Shot.This week we're looking at Ingmar Bergman's biggest success stateside both at the box office and with Oscar voters.IfCries and Whispersis not quite his most famous classic today,it remains one of the true essentials within his celebrated filmography.This mysterious and utterly gorgeous film won Bergman's longtime DP Sven Nykvist the first of his two Oscars for best cinematography.亚博主页It concerns three sisters,one of whom is dying,and the family's maid.Naturally it's very depressing.But great art always transcends.

If you're running late with your choice for Best Shot,take heart and finish watching.My own entry in this "best shot"party will be up tomorrow so yours can be too.I have a good excuse.Today I finalized all the prep work for both the '73 Smackdown festivities (running from Thursday to Saturday here) and all the bookings for this year's Toronto International Film Festival so that you can be assured coverage of that festival this year.This year I'll be staying for the entire festival so there will be more coverage than even last year.I'm so happy about that I practically broke into a hearty round of "O Canada".

But Canada can wait.Tonight we head to Sweden for an unmissable classic...

CRIES AND WHISPERS - BEST SHOTS
9 participants.Click on the photos for the corresponding articles
this post will be updated again tomorrow night with any late entries received

a reprieve from the bold crimson but one which nevertheless shows the emotional damage...
-Lam Chop Chop

the single best film in Bergman's canon,merciless but profound,bleak but beautiful...
-Antagony & Ecstasy

Anna,the housekeeper,seems to be the only one capable of true human connection...
-Coco Hits NY

my best shot for purely aesthetic reasons...
-Film Actually

Maria's flashback,though,finds yet another use for the color red...
-The Entertainment Junkie

Bergman even stated that in the screenplay red represented the interior of the soul...
-The Film's The Thing

She tried to make her pain aware to the movie itself,but it did not hear her...
-Pop Culture Crazy

Tinted in crimson (the color of the soul,according to Bergman)...
-Best Shot in the Dark

It's not the eyes that are the window to the soul so much as the faceasthe soul...
-亚博主页

...at least one more article to come but please do enjoy these a.s.a.p.

ICYMI last week's episode was very well intended as we looked at this year's most experimental arthouse hit,Under the Skinwith Scarlett Johansson.Here's what's coming next.Only four more episodes left this season so join us.I promise it's both challenging and rewarding to participate.

Wednesday
Jul 02 2014

Best Shot Schedule - Final Episodes

The first half of the 5th season of "Best Shot"began withthe most robust participation ever.I hope we can kick it back up to that notch for these final  episodes.Here's what's on tap so adjust your queues and join the fun...

we're risking two enigmas in a row...

Tues July 22nd UNDER THE SKIN (2014)
Scarlett Johansson arrives in alien form in this hypnotic visually driven and disturbing motion picture from disappearing act Jonathan Glazer (Birth,Sexy Beast).If you saw it in theaters you'll want to revisit and if you didn't,you're in for a unique experience.[It arrives for rental and sale on DVD/Blu-Ray on July 14th.]

Tues July 29th CRIES & WHISPERS (1973*)
Since we're celebrating 1973 all July to coincide with the Smackdown,here's your Best Cinematography winner.Ingmar Bergman's extraordinary movie about sisters and death.Cheerful!

*IMDb lists this as a 1972 picture claiming it was released in '72 in the States (and it's true it was nominated for the Golden Globes that year).I haven't done the research but that's mighty confusing since that would seemingly make it ineligible for Oscar play in 1973.It premiered in Bergman's own Sweden in March of 1973 and was a huge out of competition sensation at Cannes in May in 1973 and was up for five Oscars for 1973 (by some accounts,亚博主页it was Bergman's biggest hit of all time stateside) so I consider it a 1973 picture.Curiously Sweden made no submission for the Oscars in 1973 though this film would probably have trumped the beloved winner,亚博主页Truffaut'sDay For Night.

Tues August 5th TBA

Tues August 12th SUDDENLY LAST SUMMER (1959)
I've been waiting for an opportunity for us all to jump in on Anne Marie's "A Year with Kate"action,so here's our most visually elaborate chance.Her awesome series hits this landmark gothic this week.Since the Tennessee Williams films was directed by four time Oscar winner Joseph Mankiewicz (All About Eve) and stars Katharine Hepburn,Elizabeth Taylor (both nominated for Best Actress!) and Montgomery Clift that's five great artists of the cinema all grouped together for our sensationalistic amusement in this insane story of predatory homos,evil mothers,and more...with some of the best taglines the cinema ever gave us outside of Susan Hayward pictures:

...suddenly last summer Cathy knew she was being used for something evil!"

The one they're all talking about"

These are powers and passions without precedent in motion pictures."

[Amazon Instant|Netflix|iTunes]

August 19th TBA

August 26th TBA

September 2nd TBA - SEASON FINALE

Any suggestions.It gets harder and harder to find movies readily available on multiple platforms now that Netflix keeps losing Instant Watch titles beyond endless B to Z grade movies and doesn't care about their DVD business.Can you believe thatCollateral,for example,which is only 10 years old is not available for rent on Amazon or iTunes?And not Instant Watchable on Netflix either.I wanted to do that one but I don't think enough people would participate given its bizarre scarcity.