Through a Glass Darkly

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Minus is somewhat sexually frustrated, and Karin teases him, even more so after she discovers that he hides a pornographic magazine. Later, on the beach, when Karin sees that a storm is coming, she runs into a wrecked ship and huddles in fear. Minus goes to her and they engage in incestuous sexual activity. Minus tells the other men about the incident in the ship and Martin calls for an ambulance.

Karin asks to speak with her father alone. She confesses her misconduct toward Martin and Minus, saying that a voice told her to act that way and also to search David's desk. She tells David she would like to remain at the hospital , because she cannot go back and forth between two realities but must choose one.

While they are packing to go to the hospital, she runs to the attic where Martin and David observe her actions. She says that God is about to walk out of the closet door, and asks her husband to allow her to enjoy the moment. She becomes fixated on a crack in the wall out of which a spider emerges. The ambulance, a helicopter, flies by the window, making a lot of noise and shaking the door open. Karin moves toward the door eagerly but then she runs from it, terrified, and goes into a frenzy of panic.

Karin vanishes and, reappearing in a frenzy, is sedated. When she stands, she tells them of God: an evil-faced spider who tried to penetrate her. She looked into God's eyes, and they were "cold and calm," and when God failed to penetrate her he retreated onto the wall. Karin and Martin leave in the helicopter. Minus tells his father that he is afraid, because when Karin had grabbed him in the ship, he began leaving ordinary reality.

He asks his father if he can survive that way. David tells him he can if he has "something to hold on to".

through a glass darkly

He tells Minus of his own hope: love. David and his son discuss the concept of love as it relates to God, and they find solace in the idea that their own love may help sustain Karin. Minus is grateful and in awe that he finally had a real conversation with his father, uttering: "Papa spoke to me". The genre of "family drama" is one analytic approach, with academic Frank Gado referring to Minus as the "consciousness" of this portrayal of family.

Gado wrote that the story within a story takes place in Saint Teresa's Chapel, with Saint Teresa having used the " interior castle " as a symbol of the soul. Gado further argued that David's blindfolding before the performance signifies his eyes opening to reality.

The fact that David plans to use Karin's condition as a source for his writing creates a "portrait of the artist as charlatan, windbag, and heartless exploiter", essayist Peter Matthews wrote. In Karin's relationship with her husband, psychiatrist Barbara Young wrote Karin appears "withdrawn" sexually from Martin, but her sexuality is "still alive in her psychosis".

Karin envisions God as a " spider-god ". The story ends with a discussion of how God is love, a question further explored in Winter Light , which asks if understanding God is as simple as that. Bergman claimed the inspiration for the character of Karin was a woman he had lived with when he was younger.

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He reported she heard voices telling her to do things. In keeping with his idea of the film being a "chamber play" in the mold of the work of August Strindberg , Bergman referred to his cast as a " string quartet ". She said Bergman replied with "Don't give me that load of shit! The film relies on natural sounds to convey silence in the characters' lives, with cello music after the incest scene being an exception.

Janus Films launched the film's U. Janus also promoted its Oscar campaign by screening it for Academy members in Los Angeles before voting occurred.

Through a Glass Darkly | CATCH

In Sweden, the film received positive reviews for its characters, minimalist screenplay, and Harriet Andersson 's performance. Much of the criticism focused on the ending, where the characters appear overly calm despite losing Karin, and God is simply equated with love.

Through a Glass Darkly is sometimes considered the first film in a trilogy that includes Winter Light and The Silence , and focuses on spiritual issues. Bergman writes, "These three films deal with reduction. Through a Glass Darkly — conquered certainty. Winter Light — penetrated certainty.

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The Silence — God's silence — the negative imprint. Therefore, they constitute a trilogy". Upton relinquished the project to Jenny Worton, dramaturg of the Almeida Theatre , London, where it was presented in July , starring Ruth Wilson in the lead role of Karin. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Through a Glass Darkly The original Swedish poster. First he is just an inner voice, a certain knowledge, or a commandment.

Threatening or pleading. Repulsive yet stimulating. Then he lets himself be more and more known to her, and the human being gets to test the strength of the god, learns to love him, sacrifices for him, and finds herself forced into the utmost devotion and then into complete emptiness.

When this emptiness has been accomplished, the god takes possession of this human being and accomplishes his work through her hands. Then he leaves her empty and burned out, without any possibility of continuing to live in this world. That is what happens to Karin. And the borderline that she crosses is bizarre pattern on the wallpaper.


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Generally speaking Through a Glass Darkly was positively received, and the tone of the reviews can be broadly summed up by Robin Hood at the end of the piece he wrote in Stockholms-Tidningen: "It cannot be gauged by ordinary film standards. Yet one can say that it is Bergman's most significant film, the final point in the protracted development of his qualities. Some films are art. Ingmar Bergman's Through a Glass Darkly is art. And as such, it can be reviewed as art would be.

Let me just say, therefore, that the creator of this work of art is obviously ashamed of being an artist. And that this, to a certain extent, affects his artistry through fear, yet it also gives it its tautness.

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The problem appears to be insoluble. The same line of reasoning was taken up by Artur Lundkvist, writing in the film magazine Chaplin:. How far is Bergman aware of what he has expressed or has wanted to express in his film? It seems as if he put his faith as far as possible in inspiration, in art as self-supporting magic. But then he draped it in a measure of more or less misleading rationalisation, external clarification, perhaps with the intention of not giving away too much of himself. This inadequate clarification of his own motives appears to furnish him with the feelings of guilt towards art to which he constantly returns.

The process seems to be intimately linked with the terms under which he works, a fruitful concealment of the forces that one often discerns in Bergman as the sign of an "adolescent neurosis" that has not left him. Lack of clarity as to content and purpose often conspire to make Bergman's films disturbing and interesting, seductive and challenging precisely because of their ambiguity. This is the artistic dilemma that both drives him forward yet runs the risk of dragging him down, since it is both his strength and his weakness.

Martin: You're hunting for themes. But deeper currents emerge. We hear about the "sickness" of the daughter, Karin Harriet Andersson. It is never named, but is clearly schizophrenia. She has been treated and is going through a period of recovery. Her husband, Martin Max von Sydow , loves her but feels powerless to help her.

Her brother, nicknamed Minus Lars Passgard , is balanced at the entry to adolescent sexuality, and is very aware of the physical reality of his sister. The father, David Gunnar Bjornstrand , is an author, highly regarded, who has just returned from a stay in Switzerland. He is cool and distant. During the course of the first evening, the children will put on a play for their father, which has as its subject the impotence of art.

It can be seen as a veiled attack on his novels. Later, Minus asks Karin if she noticed how offended their father was. Not particularly. The characters separate, the married couple together, the other two in their rooms. It is a long Swedish summer night; when darkness falls, the sun is already rising again.

This perpetual daylight has an eerie effect. Everything that happens is like a waking dream. Karin rises up from her bed and climbs the stairs to a shabby upper floor, and enters a room. She seems almost in a trance.