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Autumn Sonata (The Criterion Collection)

Ingrid Bergman , Liv Ullmann , Ingmar Bergman    PG (Parental Guidance Suggested)   DVD
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (26 customer reviews)
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Autumn Sonata (The Criterion Collection) + Scenes from a Marriage + Saraband (Sous-titres franšais)
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Product Description

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Bergman (Ingrid) meets Bergman (Ingmar) in this fine but not outstanding story from 1978 of a concert pianist who meets up with her estranged daughter (Liv Ullmann) for the first time in seven years, and spends an evening confronting unresolved ill feelings from the past. Ingmar's been down this road plenty of times and in better films (Cries and Whispers); but even as a minor work, this is a powerful piece with two top actresses of their day. This was Ingrid Bergman's last film. --Tom Keogh

Special Features

SPECIAL EDITION FEATURES � New 2K digital film restoration � Introduction by director Ingmar Bergman from 2003 � Audio commentary featuring Bergman expert Peter Cowie � The Making of �Autumn Sonata,� a three-and-a-half-hour program examining every aspect of the production � New interview with actor Liv Ullmann � A 1981 conversation between actor Ingrid Bergman and critic John Russell Taylor at the National Film Theatre in London � Trailer � English-dubbed track � New English subtitle translation � PLUS: A booklet featuring an essay by critic Farran Smith Nehme

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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars my favorite Bergman (Ingrid or Ingmar ?) May 24 2004
By A Customer
Format:DVD
Both. Ingrid Bergman (in an Oscar-nominated performance - her last feature role) returned to Swedish cinema after 4 decades to play a pianist coming home to an problematic reunion with her daughter (Liv Ullmann-great as always).Yet another reason why Sven Nykvist have so many admirers.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Straight to the bottle.. Oct. 1 2002
Format:DVD
If you are contemplating suicide but can't find enough angst to be decisive, watch "Autumn Sonata",Ingrid Bergman's last film, and only collaboration with Ingmar. The dialogue and acting are terrific and very, well, real, but I doubt I'll ever recover my former sense of humor, since apparently:
1. Life is a steaming pile of excrement.
2.Relationships are tenuous and scarring,
and finally
3.Nobody really loves anyone.
Oh well, even bad IB is better than other stuff. So, open up your best bottle of red wine, lock up the razor blades and enjoy 8).
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5.0 out of 5 stars don't buy cheaper DVD substitutes Oct. 24 2003
Format:DVD
I had to learn the hard way, that there are less than "perfect" renditions of this DVD out there to be sold. The first I bought was one of these. I won't go on to "name call", but paying extra for the Criterion Collection is a must for any Bergman fan. The poor film quality and subtitles (to the point they are distracting from the film and at times so bad they are humerous) make paying anything at all a sheer waste of money for a Criterion Collection substitute.
I don't agree that Autumn Sonata is a mediocre film. I think Bergman did understand women well, and portrayed this mother/daughter relationship nicely. He was able to show in his dialectically opposite approach, the vulnerabilities of the narcisstic artist and the self depreciating/ martyr. They exposed themselves, faced off and retreated to their comfortable life positions by the end of the movie. The use of the unnamed ailment of the younger daughter represents the other side of mother who often cries as a baby of her back pain, but at least is left whole enough to express herself also in her music. The death of the son at age four I think represents the symbolic death of the innocence in all of the "chamber music" of characters in this film (mother, daughters and husband) which Bergman uses in many of his movies. The sparing use of scenery and number of protagonists adds to the reality of the despair here. Anyway, I could go on too long....enough said. I think this movie is worth a watch and a long ponder.
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3.0 out of 5 stars One question.... March 18 2002
By A Customer
Format:DVD
Ingmar Bergman really made Charlotte (played by Ingrid Bergman) to be a selfish and self-centered pianist, who is unaware of the damage that she caused her family. Moreover, she doesn't want to see the damage that she caused. Hint--the 7 year absence and her initial refusal to see Helena. I just have one question....
Would Charlotte have been a better mother to Eva and Helena if she had stayed at home? That's the question that needs to be addressed in "Autumn Sonata." Unfortunately, Ingmar Bergman refused to acknowledge it. As a result, we're left with a lop-sided movie.
In my humble opinion, I think Charlotte would have been a worse mother if she had stayed home, and was actually doing Eva and Helena a favor by going out on the road. There has been a lot of studies conducted on the effects that career-women and housewives have on their children. In some instances, the children were better off with the career-women who weren't at home so much. The career women were less likely to take out their stress and frustration on their children and instead channel them in a positive manner at work. Isn't this what Charlotte was doing? All right I asked two questions.
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By A Customer
Format:DVD
To begin with, this is another outstanding transfer by Criterion of a Bergman film. I think other reviewers have made a formidable case both for the excellence of the film and of the remastered transfer. I would like merely to highlight for prospective buyers one possibly overlooked advantage to this DVD edition, namely, the alternative English language audio track, in which the voices are dubbed by the original actors. I usually avoid films that have been dubbed into English, but there are times in which dubbing is more desirable than subtitles, and "Autumn Sonata" happens to offer one of them. I realize many people understandably are suspicious of films dubbed into English, and as a rule I too prefer substitles to dubbing. And yet, I encourage you to try watching this film both with subtitles and the dubbed voices. Since the film has been dubbed using the original voices, one need not worry that Bergman or Ulmann's lines are being interpreted for them by someone else. In fact, the English translation in the dubbed audio track is far superior to the subtitled translation (probably because subtitles are meant to be READ and not SPOKEN). One day, I decided, just as an experiment, to try out the dubbed audio track, and was surprised to find that my experience of the film was enhanced for a couple of reasons. First of all, "Autumn Sonata" has so many passages of extremely dense dialogue, that I often found myself watching the bottom 1/3 of the screen rather than Sven Nykvist's superb photography. One of the most remarkable aspects of "Autumn Sonata" is Bergman's use of the close-up. Read more ›
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Most recent customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Two spectacular performances
While I remembered this as an unalloyed masterpiece from seeing it in the theater on first release,
I had a few small problems re-seeing it 32 years later. Read more
Published on May 21 2012 by K. Gordon
5.0 out of 5 stars Bergman at his best
This is probably one of the most underrated movies of all time.Maybe Bergman did stuff like this in the past,but that does not mean that isn't great. Read more
Published on May 28 2004
4.0 out of 5 stars an excellent but slow paced film.
This review is for the Criterion Collection DVD edition of the film.
In this film, the only movie that both Ingrid and Ingmar Bergman (no relation) were both involved in. Read more
Published on May 11 2004 by Ted
5.0 out of 5 stars Bergmans
Ingmar Bergman is probably the greatest filmmaker of all time.Ingrid the greatest actress,remember she worked with Renoir,Hitchcock and Ingmar (among others) But,as always,is a Liv... Read more
Published on May 8 2004
5.0 out of 5 stars Typical Bergman, Typically Great
I remember watching this wrenching drama in a movie theater so quiet one could literally hear a pin drop. Read more
Published on Oct. 28 2003 by Avid Reader
3.0 out of 5 stars A SO-SO BERGMAN FILM
I think Autumn Sonata distinguishes itself by being one of the few mediocre Bergman films, in a career of otherwise exhilarating triumphs and tedious failures. Read more
Published on July 16 2003
3.0 out of 5 stars Just take a look!
This is the first Ingmar Bergman film I have seen and I did enjoy it, although I know I would enjoy it more the second time through, and very likely raise the rating. Read more
Published on Aug. 4 2002 by J B
4.0 out of 5 stars Gripping at the Least
You could never call yourself a fan of film if you've never seen an Ingmar Bergman film. This would be a good on to cut your teeth on. Read more
Published on Jan. 2 2002 by N. Kimbrough
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