Movie Reviews

Movie Review – “Fanny and Alexander” (1982)

Now that I have watched five Ingmar Bergman films, I think I can safely say that none of his films resonate with me and that they are more irritating than enjoyable. Sitting through “Fanny and Alexander” was a chore – over three hours of people running through castles and houses with little rhyme or reason, while still having that excruciatingly slow and unforgiving Ingmar Bergman pace that makes the whole movie feel like its on the strongest sleep aids known to man.

There comes a point in filmmaking when a director becomes too self-indulgent, thinking that his art and style outweighs everything else, and Bergman takes that to its most extreme, to the point that I cannot get into his movies. I find all of Bergman’s films, including “Fanny and Alexander” to be devoid of energy and passion to the point that I want to scream at the film to do something interesting or entertaining.

But let me take a moment to address anyone out there that are interested in film exploration or wishes to expand their pallet to foreign cinema – Just because I’ve never been entertained or enraptured by an Ingmar Bergman film doesn’t mean you shouldn’t watch his movies. I believe I understand why people enjoy his movies, because they are the most artistic example of filmmaking.

They feel like paintings that could be hung in museums for everyone to see, and we all have different reactions to those pieces of art. For some people, Bergman’s art has a lot to say about our inner fears and how they change over time, and they believe he says it in the most melancholy and natural way possible. Others, like myself, get nothing out of it and I just feel like I’m staring at a blank canvas. But that’s the power of subjectivity in art – your perspective and point of view changes everything, to the point that you get an entirely different outcome from it than anyone else.

Honestly, I nearly fell asleep multiple times during “Fanny and Alexander,” due to its monotonous and dull tone with a lack of anything interesting happening for a excruciatingly long periods of time. But then again, if Bergman’s films have taught me anything, it is that they are an acquired taste. I can’t say that I had a good time watching this film, but I understand why others would enjoy this tale of two children learning their place in the world after a tragic event.

At least this one didn’t make me pull my hair out like “Persona” did.

Final Grade: D+

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