Monday, July 30, 2007

Ingmar Bergman, 1918-2007

Today is a sad day for the world of film.

Ingmar Bergman, highly regarded as one of the greatest cinematic artists of all time, has died.

From his official site:
Ingmar Bergman's passing away represents a loss of unfathomable magnitude. His artistic accomplishments were ground-breaking, unique - but also of a scope that covered film and theatre as well as literature.
We remember him as a very bold person, always present, often biting in his comments. But he was often one step ahead of his contemporaries. Even when he grew old surprises from [him] were not unexpected. I believe it will take some time before we fully understand that he is no longer with us, but also the importance of his art to other people.
I read a story once about Bergman talking to David Lean (director of Lawrence of Arabia and Brief Encounter) and being asked what kind of crew he used on his films. Bergman replied, "I make my films with 18 good friends." Lean was interested and replied saying that he made his films with "150 enemies."

I haven't watched near as much Bergman as I should have by now, but what I have seen is the work of a true artist, "working out his salvation with fear and trembling", shaping the spiritual structure of his soul. If only more filmmakers like Bergman were as recognized and honored in the public square...
We live our simple daily lives. And then some terrible piece of information forces itself into our secure, safe world. It's more than we can bear. The whole state of affairs is so overwhelming, God becomes so remote.

-Winter Light (1963)

No comments: