Director: Ingmar Bergman
Starring: Victor Sjöström, Ingrid Thulin
Genre: Swedish Drama
Wild Strawberries is a film that tackles a lot of experiential themes. The film stars one of Bergman’s biggest influences (Victor Sjöström), who was a legendary director of Swedish silent cinema.
The film follows Isak Borg (Victor Sjöström) and his daughter-in-law (Ingrid Thulin) as they hit the road towards a degree ceremony in honour of Isak. On this journey, Isak must come to terms with his past and make a choice between making peace with his failings, or living out the rest of his days in regret. The plot strives in it’s originality and approach to Isak’s dreams.
Peace and regret are the main themes within this film. At this point in Isak’s life, he’s a lonely, cruel and cold old man. Dreams are used as a vessel to take the viewer on a journey alongside Isak, getting to know the character just as Marianne does. The flow between reality and Isak’s dream sequences are unbelievably natural. Isak always appears as his old-self within his dreams, while everyone else appears as their younger-selves.
The film also concerns itself with forgiveness between children and parents and lost possibilities of youth. Despite the fact that most marriages and relationships seem to fail within this film, Isak is not afraid to give love another shot after facing his regret head-on.
Wild Strawberries is a masterpiece that deals with intricate personal relationships, coming to terms with one’s past and many other existential themes, while not lacking a giggle or laugh amongst viewers from time to time.