Friday, April 10, 2009

The Virgin Springs

The Virgin Springs is a film by Igmar Bergman made in 1960. This movie is about jealousy, rage and repentance. A young beautiful virgin who is loved by her family is given the chore of a right of passage for the church. Her jealous step sister wishes that the god Odin will harm her, but as danger looms she becomes wary of the wish she had made.

As the two travel to the church alone, an old mystic man gives the jealous sister an omen. Out of fear she tries to stop her step sister but the virgin, who knows nothing of her fate, brushes it off and continues on. The young virgin is raped and killed by goat herders, while her step sister secretly watches. The step sister is horrified and yet a part of her believes that her step sister deserved this. Her family begins to worry when she does not return and her religious mother fears for the worst.

The murders (along with a child that follows them) decided to hide out in a family's home, not knowing that it's the home of the very same girl that they killed. Clues surface and the father, who was a carefree but hard nosed father in the beginning, must come to terms with intense feelings of rage. He must decide between the primeval want for vengeance and the forgiving teachings of the Christian church.

I really enjoyed this film. It was a little easier to follow than most of Bergman films. The story line was closer to what is in our movie vocabulary, as far as character development and a climax goes. Every pure emotion could be seen in each of the characters' eyes. I would suggest this movie to any person looking to get into Bergman films. After this I would suggest The 7th Seal.

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