Day 59. Bergman did it again!
By Ingmar Bergman.
So. This one is good. Again very very good. Also very sad and grim and hopeless. Frustrating at times. Every time you think it can't get any worse it still gets worse. This is one of the best anti war movies I have ever seen. And again. Really. It's so simple. Just show how war affects civilians. Yet for some fucking reason most anti war movies I've see always seem to circle around soldiers fighting. Being heroic. Saving people. Because after all in any war there are always good and bad soldiers. Right?
Nope. I love that the movie doesn't even try to take a side. Never even explains who is fighting who for what and why. There's just the army that currently occupies the island and the other army that tries to take over the island. Trapped in-between are the citizens. unpolitical, uninterested in the reasons, just waiting for it all to finally end while they hope to survive.
There are some explosions, gunfire and action in this movie. But it's over so quickly! I love how it's not portrayed as "cool" whatsoever. In any contemporary movie those explosions and action sequences would have lasted for minutes, there would have been slow motion and CGI and all the cool things! Here it's over in a few seconds. It feels brutal. Unforgiving. Real.
And then there's the relationship between the two main characters. And this is the only part where I struggle with the story. Maybe it's because I've never really been in a long term relationship or maybe it's just what war does to people. But. There are some confusing character choices that I just don't understand. At least towards the end. Like. When the Mayor has sex with the wife? I guess we never see it. At least makes out with her. I completely understand that when the Mayor later needs his money back to survive the husband refuses to give it back. To have his revenge. But I expected him to give in at any point. Instead he actually accepts the fact that the soldiers raid and burn their entire little farm and he even personally fucking shoots the Mayor dead?! That. That just felt off character to me. Like. I don't know how we got there. What made him do it. And from then on it's just as confusing. Why does she stay with him till the end and why does he just continue to be a cold blooded killer all of a sudden.
I guess she didn't really have anybody else left. To follow, to be with. And even if they don't love each other anymore they still need each other. They also sort of switched roles. While at the beginning of the movie he was the passive one and she gave all the orders, now he makes all the (bad) choices. But at least he makes them?
What get's people to a point where they decide that killing somebody is the only option they have? Maybe this was the intention. To spark those kind of thoughts inside my head. Would I really have done it differently in his place? I think so. But that's easy to say while I'm sitting comfortably on this giant couch full of colorful pillows. I hope I never have to be in a war. I hope Europe stays as peaceful and relatively friendly towards each other and the rest of the world than in the last seventy years.
I like the ending. It's open but quite hopeless and that's only fitting for this movie. Shame it definitely worth a watch, though I'm confused about the last like 20 minutes. But it's a really good movie!