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Wild Strawberries

 Unrated   DVD
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
Price: CDN$ 22.99 & FREE Shipping on orders over CDN$ 25. Details
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Frequently Bought Together

Wild Strawberries + The Seventh Seal (The Criterion Collection) + Fanny and Alexander (Special Edition Five-Disc Set) - Criterion Collection
Price For All Three: CDN$ 108.05

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Most helpful customer reviews
By K. Gordon TOP 50 REVIEWER
An old doctor (a magnificent performance by Victor Sjostrom) takes a
car trip to receive an award for 50 years in medicine, accompanied by
his daughter in law, and some teenage hitchhikers they pick up.

He is tormented by highly symbolic dreams (beautifully done), and by
the realization he has kept himself at an emotional distance from
others and the world, and now his life is racing towards it's end.

Quite moving in spots, but somehow never ended up with as much power as
I expected.

Two critics' notes made sense to me. One said that, for as great and
transparent as Sjostrom's performance is, he is so sweet and likable a
presence it's hard to reconcile him with a man his daughter in law
openly admits she doesn't like because of his cold nature.

The other point ' which could also be applied to 'The Seventh Seal' is
that the film seems less special today because the stylistic barriers
it broke and the doors it opened (an almost totally subjective film,
dream sequences of depth and meaning, etc) have since become a familiar
part of film grammar. But at the time, this was something new and
brave. Another to re-see.

Note: this version is the same transfer as the terrific looking Criterion disc,
minus the the extra features. If all you want is a great looking copy
of the film, this can be a great deal.
Was this review helpful to you?
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.8 out of 5 stars  11 reviews
22 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Master's Masterpiece March 27 2009
By Old Dog - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
After half a century, WILD STRAWBERRIES yet glimmers in these darkling days. A meditation on old age, selfishness, duty, love, and reconciliation, the film traces the last days of a respected but unloving physician (played by the elderly, frail, great Victor Sjostram, who passed away during the making of the film [in the 1920s he had starred in the daunting silent THE OUTLAW AND HIS WIFE, set in Iceland]). The main character undertakes a journey by car with his daughter-in-law to receive an honorary degree from Alma Mater. On the way he adopts three college students and a snarling, embittered married couple. He visits his very very elderly and very cold mother--and always there are visions of the sorrows, regrets, and bitternesses of his past. At the film's luminescent close the doctor at last casts off ancient recriminations to achieve a peaceful repose lulled by a shimmering scene from long ago with Mother and Father in happy tableau. One of cinema's outstanding achievemnts. But I too am an old man.
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Appreciation of This Film Came With Age Sept. 24 2009
By carol irvin - Published on Amazon.com
When I watched this film when I was young, I did not like it. I thought it was too stark, too melancholy, too dark. When you are young the world is more of a technicolor place and perhaps we are all unwilling to let the dark clouds into it. I resaw this film when I was in my 50s and my reaction was much different. There is a melancholy yet bittersweet quality to this film, almost a dreamlike glide through the corridors of memory and time. For it is an old person who will die sooner, rather than later, who is looking back on his whole life and his memories as well as winding up his life as it exists in the present. Everyone who has made it to an older age will recognize the territory of the film at once as very, very familiar. It is a Swedish professor who we watch on this journey. His relationships in life have been turbulent but not out of the ordinary. It is a beautiful film, one of Bergman's very best and he didn't make any duds.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Riveting July 11 2009
By A. Eastwood - Published on Amazon.com
Wild Strawberries is an excellent display of the broad spectrum of human emotion. At first glance an immediate disdain is inspired by the main character, until the story unfolds revealing the source of his callousness. By the end I felt nothing but a profound sense of empathy and compassion. Bergman has quickly become one of my favorite directors, and in my opinion, this film is among his best.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Yet another Bergman classic that I liked and admired, but didn't love on first viewing April 17 2012
By K. Gordon - Published on Amazon.com
An old doctor (a magnificent performance by Victor Sjostrom) takes a
car trip to receive an award for 50 years in medicine, accompanied by
his daughter in law, and some teenage hitchhikers they pick up.

He is tormented by highly symbolic dreams (beautifully done), and by
the realization he has kept himself at an emotional distance from
others and the world, and now his life is racing towards it's end.

Quite moving in spots, but somehow never ended up with as much power as
I expected.

Two critics' notes made sense to me. One said that, for as great and
transparent as Sjostrom's performance is, he is so sweet and likable a
presence it's hard to reconcile him with a man his daughter in law
openly admits she doesn't like because of his cold nature.

The other point - which could also be applied to 'The Seventh Seal' is
that the film seems less special today because the stylistic barriers
it broke and the doors it opened (an almost totally subjective film,
dream sequences of depth and meaning, etc) have since become a familiar
part of film grammar. But at the time, this was something new and
brave. Another to re-see.

Note: This transfer is the same as the excellent and more expensive
Criterion transfer, but with fewer extra features. If your interest
is in great film quality and not the extras, this is a good deal.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Before "About Schmidt" there was Isak Borg June 13 2011
By Elvin Ortiz - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
Seventy-eight year old Isak Borg journeys on his way to receive an honorary degree for his professional work. He travels in his own car accompanied by his daughter-in-law. Also he is joined by a young trio composed by two men and a woman. Throughout the film, Isak struggles with fears of loneliness and the possibility that his life has been a waste. He suffers a dream with surrealistic characteristics, where his own death in life is illustrated thru the use of handless clocks, empty streets, ruins, and faceless bodies. Through the journey we also discover his strenuous relationships with his son, daughter-in-law, and with his wife. He has dreams and reminiscences of the past that communicate to us the things that really have meaning in life. Basically, it is the tale of a person who has succeeded as a professional, but has failed as father and husband, and he discovers at the end that the price to pay for this negligence is loneliness. Isak, however, does not want to remain alone and makes attempts to amend for this hollow past.

The film shows surrealistic images to dramatize Isak's existential crisis. It also contrasts an idyllic (pastoral) past with a modern middle-class life. We also get to see the lack of faith and hope in Isak and his son's life. The distinction between middle-class culture and the innocence of a rural, agrarian society can be seen in the rivalry between Isak, concerned about sin and doing the right thing, and his brother, who is passionate and incorrigible. Sara, Isak's love, stands between the two. Sara marries Isak's brother and leads a fruitful life having many children. On the other hand, Isak has been the head of a dysfunctional family. Thus, Isak must confront this past in his present struggle to find meaning in his life.

This Essential Art House edition is an excellent presentation of the film. If you like this type of film, or if you are a Bergman fan, then you will enjoy this edition.
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