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The Virgin Spring (1960) - Ingmar Bergman

Related: rape revenge trope - Ingmar Bergman - 1960 - film

The Virgin Spring (1960) - Ingmar Bergman
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Made in 1960 and set in medieval Sweden, Ingmar Bergman's The Virgin Spring is based on a folk ballad. It also examines a society in transition from Norse pantheism to Christianity. The film starkly contrasts Ingeri--a dark, feral, Odin-worshipping foster daughter to a Christian family headed by Max Von Sydow--and their own daughter, a pretty and blond but also vain and naïve girl named Karin, whom Ingeri resents. They travel out together to a distant church where Karin is to offer votive candles to the Virgin Mary. owever, en route, Karin is raped and murdered by two desperate goatherds, accompanied by a 13-year-old boy. By coincidence, the goatherds then seek refuge with Karin's parents and even try to sell them her clothes, which proves to be a mortal error.

Bergman was greatly influenced by Akira Kurosawa when he made The Virgin Spring, as evinced in its ominous use of dark and shade and lengthy sequences without dialogue. However, this is more than pastiche.

Although the Christian ending with which Bergman feels obliged to conclude the film doesn't quite sit well in a movie in which God is as palpably absent as in any Bergman movie, the slow, remorseless pace of the murder and subsequent retribution bring to mind Krzysztof Kieslowski's A Short Film About Killing in their sense of the futility of vengeance. --David Stubbs, Amazon.com

Jungfrukällan ("The Virgin Spring") is a 1960 Swedish film directed by Ingmar Bergman. Set in medieval Sweden it is the story of a wealthy Christian family whose daughter, played by Birgitta Pettersson, is raped and murdered by a pair of goat herders. The herders then unknowingly seek shelter at the home of the murdered girl. Her parents, played by Max von Sydow and Birgitta Valberg, discover that it was the shepherds who killed their daughter when they try to sell the mother some of her daughter's robes. Locking them in their chamber the father plans and then kills the two murderers and also their young brother. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Virgin_Spring [May 2005]

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