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Showing 1-10 of 43 reviews(Verified Purchases). See all 129 reviews
on December 16, 2016
I'd give this movie ten stars if there were ten to give. What a warm, wise and exceptionally artistic vision of an aging man who gets another chance. I saw this film first when I was too young to appreciate it. Now I revel in its combination of artistry, grace and vivid portraiture.
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on October 3, 2014
Wild Strawberries is a subtle and meditative film by Ingmar Bergman. The protagonist looks back on his life with regret and sorrow but he also finds things to appreciate that bring fulfillment and joy to his life. My favorite scene is the dream sequence where he is in the empty street with the clocks with no hands.

Though the film is somewhat slow, I feel there are things you can take away from it that relate to your own life. The black and white photography is stunning and crisp. I highly recommend this film.
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on January 20, 2005
I need not repeat all the fine words of the previous writers, except to say I am grateful to Criterion for delivering the same crisp print I remember from years ago when WS was first available in the US. What a fine accomplishment. (Would that the company were to concentrate on historic preservation, as opposed to some of its recent dubious works.)

What I also admire in this DVD is the interview conducted by Jorg Donner. He so well draws out Ingmar Bergman on such a wide variety of issues that you come away with a marvelous intellectual and emotional portrait of the artist. What is more, you hear from the maestro's own mouth of the breadth of his own work during his nearing century --- over 50 films, countless theatrical and operatic productions, some 120, which continue to propel him in his advancing age.

Bergman may well be the Shakespeare of our own age, and Donner's drawing out helps you to realize this. As The Bard drew his English from the first Book of Common Prayer, so may Bergman be the artistic idiom from which not only some of the present filmmakers and writers receive their inspiration, but perhaps may well project into the future.........if writers and directors are wise. For just as Bergman struggled with the Svensk Filmindustri in his early development (just as did Kurosawa with the Japanese Film Institute), so must the present and next generation struggle to find meaning. Not that I am seeing much from them right now, you understand.....

Donner also helps us to see that Ingmar continues to be a work in progress, still growing and changing in aspect of mind and body, proving that the apogee is not met at some legislated retirement age. What a fine interview!

My mind's eye returns to the movie. Isn't it a marvel how Bergman develops his characters, especially the venerable Victor Sjostrom, and the simultaneous vulnerability and lyricism of the kids? What a sweet show.

This is filmmaking at its best, and restoration at its highest. I only regret that Amazon (the Greek of that word literally meaning "the breastless ones") prohibits me from giving more than five stars, five less than in my heart.
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on May 7, 2008
***** 1957. Written and directed by Ingmar Bergman. Golden Berlin Bear and Golden Globe in the Best Foreign Film category. An old doctor, solitary and egocentric, remembers his childhood while driving to an honorific appointment. Right after The Seventh Seal - Criterion Collection that was a rather cold and desperate motion picture about Death, the Swedish master handles the same subject with a more human approach. WILD STRAWBERRIES is a psychoanalysis without psychiatrist and is undoubtedly a masterpiece. Take the time to watch the 75 minutes Bergman interview presented as bonus feature of this Criterion release. Bergman talks about his childhood, his writing, life and death. A DVD zone your library.
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on July 7, 1999
I first saw this film as a wide-eyed college student in the 1970s, and it literally changed my life. That doesn't mean that it doesn't speak to more (or less) mature audiences. Anyone, looking back and examining his life--which we all do at various times--can identify with this film and its protagonist. In fact, this is one of those movies that I watch annually. This is also the movie that first showed me--back those many years ago--that movies can be more than the standard Hollywood fare (and some of my favorite movies ARE Hollywood fare). The opening dream sequence is startling, and not like anything I had seen in a movie before. The movie has its flaws: I'm not sure the "hitchhiking teenagers" really work, but there are so many other things in this film that work perfectly. And the concluding scene--of the elderly Isak Borg finally remembering his long-dead parents fondly, sitting peacefully on a river bank fishing in the distance always brings me to tears--even more so since my own parents passed away. This is a movie everyone should see--so get over your silly aversion to black & white and subvert your subtitle-phobia and watch this classic.
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on March 29, 2016
Really a special movie. I hadn't seen it in decades! A real pleasure to watch a movie the evokes thought rather than hammers a message into the viewer.
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on May 30, 2002
One of the most touching films I have ever seen. As the Criterion folks say on their box, *Wild Strawberries* is Ingmar Bergman's most humane movie -- it is, therefore, my favorite Bergman movie. Tell you the truth, I'm not always wild about this director. On a personal level, he seems to be a querulous, arrogant pain in the a--. His movies are simply a drag, often as not (I find *Cries and Whispers*, for example, unwatchable -- a terrible movie). The morbid, maudlin mood in many of his movies gets to be much too much. But in *Wild Strawberries*, the depression is leavened by an uncharacteristic -- and convincing -- affirmation of human lives and loves. But the road to that affirmation is a rocky one: Isak Borg, an octogenarian doctor, is on his way across the country (by funereal 1938 Packard) to receive a national merit award for his decades of service and brilliant practice. During the long ride, Borg finds himself mired in memories and fantasies about his past . . . and finds himself, well, facing himself. Is he able to do this? Watch the movie and find out. By the way, the movie works so brilliantly primarily because of Victor Sjostrom's performance -- surely one of the greatest ever on film. You miss the nuances on first viewing. On subsequent viewing, Sjostrom's subtlety and power become manifest, making it clear why you were so overwhelmed the first time. And the close-ups of Sjostrom's face at the very end of the film are as beautiful as any painting from a Renaissance master. To sum up: much like Isak Borg facing his past, every serious movie-lover must confront *Wild Strawberries* at some point. Fortunately, our experience won't be as uncomfortable. [Criterion's DVD comes with the best commentary I've ever heard for a film. Peter Cowie is a perfect match for *Wild Strawberries*: one of the world's most eminent film scholars on one of the world's most eminent movies. His comments are unobtrusive, on-point, wise, ripe with anecdote, educational. However, the accompanying 90-minute interview of Bergman by Jorn Donner was tough going. In fact, I couldn't get through it all. The pushy, crotchety director keeps arguing with everything the interviewer says. 90 minutes of that is too many for me.]
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on February 14, 2013
Very interesting character study. It was interesting to listen to the language and I was able to learn some new words as well as understand more words than I expected. The scenery was lovely inspite of the dark nature of the film.
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on September 2, 2016
as good as I remembered from when I saw it in the '60s
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on February 17, 2002
Bergman is one of my favorite director and for my money, this is his best movie. I love the way he tells the story with narration and great dream and nightmare sequences. The wonderful thing is, it's a serious and dramatic film but also entertaining at the same time. Sometimes it moves slow (like the main character, a 78 year old professor) and it also moves faster when younger people are involve in the story. The great Victor Sjostrom gives such a superb human performance that you feel everything he's feeling and I think this is why I love this movie so much, he takes you with him on an emotionnal journey that you don't forget. Other strong points: the beautiful and touching performance of the daughter in law (Ingrid Thulin), the energetic performance of the beautiful young girl (Bibi Anderson), great photography, wonderful screenplay and the score is perfect. I heard often that Bergman made depressing movies, maybe they're not like the musicals of the 50's but I've seen a lot of his work and I don't find it depressing at all, if you watch and listen closely you will always find a message of hope somewhere.
Like Kurosawa, Fellini and Carné to name a few, his movies are great art full of symbolism and humanity, almost inexistant today in cinema. This is a must buy if you like this movie cause the transfer by Criterion is great and they give us a 90 minutes interview with Bergman (very serious but fascinating if you want to know more about the man). Also an audio commentary by Peter Cowie (who also did one on the seventh seal) and photos of the production.
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