Autumn Sonata

Blu-ray Review: Devastating Honesty of Bergman’s ‘Autumn Sonata’

Autumn Sonata

CHICAGO – “Autumn Sonata,” Ingrid Bergman’s last film and first collaboration with cinema’s other great Bergman (Ingmar), is a challenging film. Is it pure melodrama or is it raw human emotion? The line is a fine one, enhanced by the theatricality of the film, one that opens with a character breaking the 4th wall. And yet I choose to take “Autumn Sonata” seriously and not as emotional manipulation, a decision enhanced by the enlightening essay in the Criterion edition by Farran Smith Nehme, which reveals how much of both Bergman’s own issues with parenthood may have impacted this caustic commentary on how we don’t really change, even as death is staring us in the face.

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