Sweden, 1966, 83 min, 2K DCP, Dir. Ingmar Bergman, Not Rated, Swedish with English subtitles, Janus Films
"Persona is at once tactile and elusive, splintered and seamless, systematic and free-associative. Essentially a movie of fragments and vignettes, it is held together by the power of the artist’s craft and the centripetal force of his unconscious." —J. Hoberman, The New York Times
By the midsixties, Ingmar Bergman had already conjured many of cinema’s most unforgettable images. But with the radical Persona, this supreme artist attained new levels of visual poetry. In the first of a series of legendary performances for Bergman, Liv Ullmann plays a stage actor who has inexplicably gone mute; an equally mesmerizing Bibi Andersson is the garrulous young nurse caring for her in a remote island cottage. While isolated together there, the women perform a mysterious spiritual and emotional transference that would prove to be one of cinema’s most influential creations. Acted with astonishing nuance and shot in stark contrast and soft light by the great Sven Nykvist, Persona is a penetrating, dreamlike work of profound psychological depth. The film was shot on the island of Fårö, where Bergman spent much of his life; this cinematic heritage is explored in Bergman Island, the latest film from Mia Hansen-Løve.
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