Monday, October 17, 2011

Virgin Darkness

I started the "Bergman Experience" with the youtube video that interviewed him on his private island.  It was clear that he was a reclusive man and uninterested in the happenings of the modern world.  I was surprised to see the type of life he had decided to life and what led to him living that way.  By the end of the clip, I realized that I had seen his film The Seventh Seal in high school.  I recalled it being deep fantasy and dark.  Beyond that, I really had no other memory of the plot.  
Going into The Virgin Spring I really had no idea what to expect.  The film appeared to be set in the late 1800s and I feel it achieved representing that time well.  The tradition of the virgin delivering the candles to church was new for me.  Is that something that happens after the spring thaw or is it more regular?  I've always known that virgins, in that time, were regarded as extremely sacred and special, but I was unaware how the non-virgin maidens were treated as such deviants in society.  
The movie followed a fairly predictable course: introduction of the main characters; set the scene for the activity of the movie; the journey to the church, but then the introduction of the old man on the creek and the killing of the virgin were very unexpected events.  I did not understand who, or what purpose, the old man at the creek was or served.  Then the rape and killing of the virgin was a major shock.  The realism and brutality of that scene, I believe sent shivers down all of our spines.  The darkness in contrast to this beautiful spring setting was overpowering.  I started to ask the question to myself, "if this journey is so long or dangerous, why did she almost travel alone or feel at ease during the entire trip?" 
I was puzzled throughout the movie by the involvement of the frog.  What purpose did it serve and what did it represent?   

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