A Few Words About A few words about...™ Wild Strawberries -- in Blu-ray

Discussion in 'Blu-ray and UHD' started by Robert Harris, May 28, 2013.

  1. Robert Harris

    Robert Harris Archivist
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    We must have viewed Mr. Bergman's Wild Strawberries in our film study classes a dozen times a year.  Normally followed by either 8 1/2, Citizen Kane or L'Avventura.

    At a certain point, we knew every move that Victor Sjostrom would make.  Every nuance and every expression in what may be one of the finest performances on film.  Mr. Sjostrom is worth researching, by the way, as he had quite a career.

    All the way back to 1912.

    Wild Strawberries would be his final work.  He passed away in 1960, at 80.

    I had to cover this film for HTF, as it's one of the greats on so many levels.  Just iconic.

    A brilliant, and entertaining film.

    Gorgeous black & white cinematography by Gunnar Fischer, who also shot Smiles of a Summer Night, The Seventh Seal and The Magician.  All incredibly beautiful work.

    As a Blu-ray, the Criterion release shines.  The image harvest is perfect, although I have conceptual problems.  The tonalities of the black & white image are not bettered by anything else on Blu-ray.

    The original Swedish track in uncompressed form is likewise, perfect.

    My single problem, and it really has nothing to do with the Blu-ray, is my disagreement with a 2k scan of the original negative toward a video master.  To me, it's an archival waste.  An original negative should never be used to produce anything other than archival elements.

    One could have scanned a new fine grain master, and achieved the same final result.  Or even better, a 4k scan of the OCN, actually accomplishing something.

    Regardless, the Blu-ray is a stellar achievement, of one of the greatest films ever made.

    For those who have never experienced Wild Strawberries, it's a haunting about life, the past, and the future.  It's a film that you'll never forget once you see it, finally arriving on Blu-ray in a form that should be on one's short list of reference discs.

    As to Mr. Bergman's work, if I was forced to select one of his films as my favorite, this might be it.

    Image - 5

    Audio - 5

    Very Highly Recommended.

    RAH

     
  2. bujaki

    bujaki Screenwriter

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    Amen.
    A small amendment: Sjostrom died aged 80.
     
  3. Robert Harris

    Robert Harris Archivist
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    My mathematical skills have never been my high point. Only worse is my sense of direction, which is nil.

    RAH
     
  4. Charles Smith

    Charles Smith Extremely Talented Member
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    I have no idea how I'd ever choose a single favorite Bergman film.

    I do remember this was the second one I saw. The first was The Magician.

    Been waiting for this, as I somehow never acquired the DVD.
     
  5. theonemacduff

    theonemacduff Second Unit

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    Saw this in film studies class (though in our class it came with Seven Samurai, Red & White, and Zéro Pour Conduit which I actually didn't like that much) and when the opportunity arose, some years later, I VHS taped it off a local educational channel and basically wore out the tape. Nice to know I can request it as a birthday present, and soon.
     
  6. DavidJ

    DavidJ Producer
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    Thanks for the "words." It is great to hear that the Blu-ray is up to Criterion's usual standards, but it is a shame that it wasn't a 4K scan to help preserve this great film. This may be my favorite of many great Bergman films.
     
  7. atcolomb

    atcolomb Second Unit

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    My first Criterion laserdisc i ever bought years ago and one of my favorite films of all time. Also this was the first Bergman movie i ever saw as a kid when i saw it on my local PBS station.
     
  8. Craig Beam

    Craig Beam Screenwriter

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    A-ha! There's my Father's Day present! :D
     
  9. Lromero1396

    Lromero1396 Supporting Actor

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    AMEN!
     

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