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Saraband Reviews

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Emanuel Levy

Rumored to be the Swedish maestro's swansong, this is a major work with all the thematic and formal features, an uncompromisingly harrowing family portrait.

Full Review Source: EmanuelLevy.Com | Original Score: A-

August 21, 2005
Marc Savlov
Austin Chronicle

A pure distillation of the great director's ongoing themes of the frailty of the human psyche and mankind's willful inability to accept the inevitable, whatever that may be.

Full Review Source: Austin Chronicle | Original Score: 3.5/5

August 14, 2005
John A. Nesbit
Old School Reviews

clearly understands how to involve the audience with his somber material

Full Review Source: Old School Reviews | Original Score: B

August 13, 2005
Marta Barber
Miami Herald
Top Critic IconTop Critic

For those inclined to search for psychological twists, the film offers plenty of Freudian situations capable of provoking lengthy discussions. For the film buff, the discussions will turn to a Bergman still at the peak of his craft.

Full Review Source: Miami Herald | Original Score: 3.5/4

August 12, 2005
Piet Levy
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

A good note to end on for a filmmaker renowned for his greatness.

| Original Score: 3/4

August 11, 2005
Eleanor Ringel Gillespie
Atlanta Journal-Constitution
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A stunning and complex final bow from a stunning and complex artist.

Full Review Source: Atlanta Journal-Constitution | Original Score: A-

August 11, 2005
Josh Larsen
Sun Publications (Chicago, IL)

...a chronicle of how bitterness only hardens over time.

Full Review Source: Sun Publications (Chicago, IL) | Original Score: 3/4

August 10, 2005
Walter Chaw
Film Freak Central

The message is the medium.

Full Review Source: Film Freak Central | Original Score: 2.5/4

August 10, 2005
Marc Mohan

A fitting coda to a career that forced audiences worldwide to reconsider the capabilities of an entire art form.

Full Review Source: Oregonian | Original Score: A-

August 5, 2005
Peter Canavese
Groucho Reviews

Partly an internalized memory play and partly a strident drama in the vein of Strindberg or Ibsen, Ingmar Bergman's latest swan song to cinema bears the mark of a master.

| Original Score: 4/4

August 5, 2005
Jonathan Rosenbaum
Chicago Reader
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The performances are perfectly distilled, but the traits I dislike in Bergman are all here -- self-pity, brutality, spiritual constipation, and an unwillingness to try to overcome these difficulties.

Full Review Source: Chicago Reader | Original Score: 2/4

August 5, 2005
Michael Wilmington
Chicago Tribune
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What remain intact are the filmmaker's unbreakable heart, lyrical soul and sublime art. So why should we say goodbye? Instead: Bravo. Encore.

Full Review Source: Chicago Tribune | Original Score: 4/4

August 5, 2005
Steven Rea
Philadelphia Inquirer
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Saraband, flat and static both visually and thematically, doesn't begin to approximate the austere beauty of the director's art-house classics.

| Original Score: 2.5/4

August 5, 2005
Richard Nilsen
Arizona Republic
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Saraband shows absolutely no sign that Bergman has run out of things to say or ways to say them -- it is as fresh and direct as any he's made.

Full Review Source: Arizona Republic | Original Score: 5/5

August 4, 2005
Sean Burns
Philadelphia Weekly

Worth watching, even if it feels a bit musty and mothballed. Consider Saraband a footnote to Bergman's brilliant career.

August 4, 2005
Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
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Powerfully, painfully honest.

Full Review Source: Chicago Sun-Times | Original Score: 4/4

August 4, 2005
Jean Lowerison
San Diego Metropolitan

Bergman is an acquired taste. For my money, these folks are too self-involved and needy to sustain my interest.

Full Review Source: San Diego Metropolitan

July 30, 2005
Frank Swietek
One Guy's Opinion

A poignant, powerful valedictory from one of the true masters of cinema.

Full Review Source: One Guy's Opinion | Original Score: B+

July 29, 2005
Robert Denerstein
Denver Rocky Mountain News
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Bergman may find little with which to console himself, but he's still able to look at suffering with an intensity that's unlike any other the movies have ever known.

| Original Score: B+

July 29, 2005
Eric D. Snider

Ullmann and Josephson are old Bergman pros and have evidently learned, over the decades, how to act the roles he assigns them naturally and flawlessly.

Full Review Source: | Original Score: B

July 28, 2005
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