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Smiles of a Summer Night (Criterion) (Blu-Ray)


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Smiles of a Summer Night (Criterion) (Blu-Ray) + Summer with Monika (The Criterion Collection) [Blu-ray] + Summer Interlude (The Criterion Collection) [Blu-ray]
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Product Details

  • Directors: Ingmar Bergman
  • Format: Black & White, Full Screen, Subtitled, NTSC
  • Language: Swedish
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region A/1
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.77:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • MPAA Rating: UNRATED
  • Studio: Criterion
  • Release Date: May 10 2011
  • Run Time: 108 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B004NWPY3Y
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #41,444 in DVD (See Top 100 in DVD)


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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
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Most helpful customer reviews

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Patrik Lemberg on March 30 2004
Format: DVD
"Smiles of a Summer Night" is probably a reason why Bergman has made so few comedies. It isn't at all bad, though - I'd give it 9/10 stars for staying entertaining throughout, but had the script--or rather, SOME LINES--been adapted or dramatized a bit, this story could easily have been presented as another one of Bergman's philosophical dramas. Russian roulette, suicide, and adultery (mistresses and wives meeting under social circumstances) are a few things involved - this doesn't sound very much like 1955 comedy ingredients, does it? ...well, my laughs weren't always silent; at times I was highly amused, and I can see how he did pull off something new in cinema with this film, but Bergman certainly has more talent in making movies that can't be presented in their opening as "A romantic comedy". I doubt that this will disappoint any dedicated Bergman fan, though, or that this edition will disappoint any costumer; Criterion always does great restoration jobs.
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By K. Gordon TOP 50 REVIEWER on April 14 2012
Format: DVD
A bunch of upper class folk spend a weekend together at a country
house. Lots of bed hopping, betrayal, male macho posturing, and female
manipulation ensues.

Never for a second dull, but for me never quite rose to the heights of
Bergman's greatest works either.

Personally I found the Soundheim musical adaptation of this - 'A Little
Night Music' - more moving and human. There's something a bit distanced and
controlling about Bergman's approach which limits our chance to
empathize with these characters. I smiled a lot, but was left wanting
something deeper.

Sort of a fun one-night-stand of a film.
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Format: DVD
Ingmar Bergman made many films, this one made him.
Although a marvelous achievement in its own right, this matchless comedy of manners, "Smiles Of A Summer Night" stands out as a landmark, recognized by many as such during the past 50 years. Most recently it made the All-TIMES 100 list of best films compiled by renowned film critics Corliss and Schickel for Times Magasine.
As late as in an interview recorded in 2003, Ingmar Bergman agreed to call "Smiles Of A Summer Night" a watershed in his film career. "After its success", he recalled "I had my hands free... I was able to do whatever I wanted to do." Truly enough, he went on to make, in immediate succession, such great films like "The Seventh Seal" and "Wild Strawberries".
And it was only the beginning of what best can be described as Bergmansk phenomenon. "The Virgin Spring", Through A Glass Darkly", "Persona", "Cries and Whispers", "Autumn Sonata", "Fanny and Alexander". One true classic after the other was bestowed upon us by this undisputed grandmaster of the world cinema during the course of his rich, fruitful career.
With superb acting, lively dialog and impeccable cinematography, "Smiles" leaves nothing to be desired. It seems to be a happy story, at least from the audience's point of view.
Still, the director recalls, in his published memoirs, how depressed he was being stuck with the script, how bad he felt during production, and how embarrassed he was to find out about film's great success at Cannes, where it won the Grand Prix. All this was unprecedented for the producers, the Svensk Filmindustri as they responded "like an old lady who never knew to waltz, now suddenly being asked by a variety of cavaliers", to quote Bergman.
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By A Customer on July 19 2004
Format: DVD
This film is perfect -- comedy, drama, you name it. Performances are all tight and Bergman weaves a marvelous tale of how people make fools of themselves at almost all times. They deceive each other and themselves, only wasting large portions of their lives in the process. He is always teaching us a lesson, and I like that in a film. Comic moments abound, however, and the result is uplifting, honest and very real.
The film is touted as his only comedy, however, I would not categorize the film this way. There are deeply felt moments not to be ignored by the viewer. I have seen the film several times and I am very excited that it is now available on DVD. I recommend it highly and I hope that you enjoy it. It is a more than worthy film that satisfies on high ground. It is adult and insightful. Please, do not let this one pass you by if you are at all serious about filmmaking and Bergman's considerable contribution. Let's be grateful for his vast upus.
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Format: DVD
Ingmar Bergman directed a romantic comedy when he filmed Smiles of a Summer Night that is as playful as Shakespeare's A Midsummer Nights Dream and is set in a small scale backdrop of Renoir's Rules of the Game (1939). Despite the similarities of other stories Bergman creates a unique comedy that is full of conspiring intrigue as it revolves around a small number of characters at the turn of the century in a small Swedish town.

Fredrik Egerman (Gunnar Björnstrand), a successful middle-aged lawyer and former widower, has remarried with Anne (Ulla Jacobsson) who is at least twenty years younger than him. Fredrik's son, Henrik (Björn Bjelfvenstam), from his previous marriage, is of the same age as Anne and has recently arrived home from completing his theological examinations. Petra, the family maid, flirts with Henrik as he expresses his liking for the opposite sex. As a consequence, Henrik is struggling with an overwhelming inner guilt originating from his incapability to live by his lofty values stemming from his Christian faith. In addition, the prominent actress Desiree Armfeldt (Eva Dahlbeck), a previous lover to Fredrik, is performing at the town theater. Fredrik makes nightly visit to Desiree which puts him in harms way as Desiree's current lover, Carl Magnus (Jarl Kulle), a military officer known for his success in duels visits at the same time. However, this is just the beginning for all the predicaments that Fredrik is about to experience.
Smiles of a Summer Night is a well-written comedy with several subplots that drive the main theme, love, forward as it displays Bergman's wide range of story telling. Bergman displays a simple story which becomes complex as the characters are continually dishonest.
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