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30 December 2018: Fanny and Alexander


Fanny and Alexander
Ingmar Bergman
1982 | 312 min | Colour | Digital
Swedish, German, Yiddish, English & French with English subtitles

Please note that this is the full-length version and will include intermissions.

“Christmas is the among the most paradoxical of holidays: it’s an occasion for family, feasting and camaraderie that takes place during the darkest and coldest part of the calendar year, and its life-affirming origin story has only been eclipsed by the strange folklore that has developed around the holiday in the intervening centuries. Few films in the history of cinema have synthesized all these conflicting qualities quite as beautifully as Fanny and Alexander, the first half of which presents a sensually rapturous vision of a yuletide gathering in Uppsala, where a young Alexander wards off premature hallucinations of mortality in a cocoon of tinsel and singalongs. The merrymaking, however, gradually yields to darkness and instability following a death in the family, forcing the titular siblings into the ascetic mansion of their mother's new disciplinarian husband and, by extension, a prolonged confrontation with the cruel machinations of the world beyond their cozy childhood home. One of Bergman's lushest, most emotionally varied films, Fanny and Alexander is a dreamlike coming-of-age tale that doesn’t so much expose despair beneath warm, familiar surfaces as suggest the inextricable intertwining of the two.” – Harvard Film Archive

Part of our season on Ingmar Bergman