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Ingmar Bergman's Cinema, 6: Dreams / A Lesson in Love
SPECIFICATIONS
  • 1.37:1 Standard
  • Swedish PCM Mono
  • English subtitles
  • 1 Disc
FEATURES
  • Introduction by director Ingmar Bergman

Ingmar Bergman's Cinema, 6: Dreams / A Lesson in Love

Blu-ray
Reviewed by: Chris Galloway

Directed By: Ingmar Bergman
2018 | 197 Minutes | Licensor: Svensk Filmindustri

Release Information
Blu-ray | MSRP: $299.95 | Series: The Criterion Collection
Sony Pictures Home Entertainment

Release Date: November 20, 2018
Review Date: August 11, 2019

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SYNOPSIS

In honor of Ingmar Bergman’s one hundredth birthday, the Criterion Collection is proud to present the most comprehensive collection of his films ever released on home video. One of the most revelatory voices to emerge from the postwar explosion of international art-house cinema, Bergman was a master storyteller who startled the world with his stark intensity and naked pursuit of the most profound metaphysical and spiritual questions. The struggles of faith and morality, the nature of dreams, and the agonies and ecstasies of human relationships—Bergman explored these subjects in films ranging from comedies whose lightness and complexity belie their brooding hearts to groundbreaking formal experiments and excruciatingly intimate explorations of family life.

Arranged as a film festival with opening and closing nights bookending double features and centerpieces, this selection spans six decades and thirty-nine films—including such celebrated classics as The Seventh Seal, Persona, and Fanny and Alexander alongside previously unavailable works like Dreams, The Rite, and Brink of Life. Accompanied by a 248-page book with essays on each program, as well as by more than thirty hours of supplemental features, Ingmar Bergman’s Cinema traces themes and images across Bergman’s career, blazing trails through the master’s unequaled body of work for longtime fans and newcomers alike.


PICTURE

Disc six in Criterion’s ginormous box set Ingmar Bergman’s Cinema presents two more early works from the director: Dreams and A Lesson in Love. Both films are presented on this dual-layer disc in the aspect ratio of 1.37:1 using new 2K restorations. Dreams has been scanned from the 35mm original camera negative and A Lesson in Love from a 35mm interpositive.

Dreams comes off looking the better of the two, while also offering one of the stronger looking presentations in the set so far. There are a handful of minor marks and a few shots that look a little softer (though this seems to be a byproduct of the photography) but on the whole it’s a sharp looking image, with very little in the way of damage remaining.

A Lesson in Love has more obvious wear to it: scratches and bits of dirt are more obvious here, though in the grand scheme of things it’s all still very minimal. Contrast and brightness may be boosted a little bit as well, with some brighter scenes looking staggeringly bright, whites almost blooming at times. Granted, this could be how the film is intended to look.

Both have great digital presentations, though, both delivering the details and rendering grain excellently, and both have a nice photographic look to them in the end, no notable artifacts present. Though one easily looks better than the other they’re still both offer very sharp looking presentations.

Dreams: 9/10, A Lesson in Love: 8/10

All Blu-ray screen captures come from the source disc and have been shrunk from 1920x1080 to 900x506 and slightly compressed to conserve space. While they are not exact representations they should offer a general idea of overall video quality.

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Dreams

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A Lesson in Love

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A Lesson in Love

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A Lesson in Love

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AUDIO

Both films come with lossless PCM 1.0 monaural presentations. They’re both clear and clean, with a bit of background noise, but no severe damage or drops.

6/10

SUPPLEMENTS

Criterion does spread special features across the titles in the set, though some discs feature nothing. The only feature found here is an introduction by Ingmar Bergman that was recorded for A Lesson in Love. Filmed by Marie Nyerod in 2003 for television airings of his films, Bergman recalls the fear he had as to how audiences would respond to his comedy, and he was overjoyed when he heard audiences laughing. It’s a sweet 4-minute piece.

The set’s included 247-page book features an essay on the two films by Imogen Sara Smith, covering Bergman’s period of going a more comedic route with his films, including the two here and Smiles of a Summer Night.

The intro by Bergman is charming and one of my favourites though it’s a shame there isn’t more scholarly content here about this period.

2/10

CLOSING

Another disc with little supplementary material (just an introduction from the director) but at least it continues on with the brilliant digital presentations this set is offering so far.




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Purchase From:
amazon.com  amazon.ca