Swedish director Ingmar Bergman passed away this weekend at his home in Faro, Sweden, at the age of 89. The cause of death is unknown.
Held as one of the greatest directors of modern film, Bergman directed over 50 movies, most of which capture the spirit of his home country--from its gloomy winter evenings to glowing summer ones. He was perhaps best known for his film, The Seventh Seal, an allegorical tale of the Black Plague done in 1957.
Upon hearing the news, director Woody Allen said the following: "I was very saddened by the death of Ingmar Bergman. He was a friend and certainly the greatest film artist of my lifetime. He told me that he aws afraid that he would die on a very, very sunny day. And I can only hope it was overcast and he got the weather he wanted."
Influential director Martin Scorsese had this to say: "The passing of Ingmar Bergman is an enormous loss. He was one of our guiding lights, and for many, many people, moviemakers and movie-watchers, he offered the first solid evidence that movies and art could be one in the same. His films of the '50s The Seventh Seal, Wild Strawberries, Smiles of a Summer Night had a profound effect on me, as they did on so many others. And then, what was so astonishing about Bergman was that he kept growing, experimenting, evolving and surprising, even shocking us. We were all amazed by his trilogy of the early '60s--Through a Glass Darkly, Winter Light and The Silence.
"And then he went even further with Persona. Its difficult to convey what it felt like to watch Persona for the first time the way it turned film grammar inside out, in a way that was completely different from what was happening in Italy, France, Japan. Many of the films that followed, including Shame and The Passion of Anna, Scenes from a Marriage, were just as surprising. With Fanny and Alexander, he created a grand summation, a film of real majesty (especially in its uncut version), that you could delve into like a great novel.
"And then, after he retired he kept going! And he ended on a high note with Saraband, a movie of truly eloquent simplicity. And were not even talking about his novels, his plays, his autobiographical volumes, or the work he did in the theater. No other way of saying it: Ingmar Bergman was a giant."
Source: Variety. Posted 07.30.07 by reelz