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Discussion in 'DVD' started by Seth_S, Nov 12, 2002.
Any chance that Bergman's Persona is going to come to DVD anytime soon?
I've been waiting and waiting for this one.
MGM has the rights, and they produced a restored print with newly translated subtitles a year or two ago for arthouse/museum screenings.
That new restoration (it included a previously cut section during the opening) will presumably be released under MGM's "World Movies" label at some stage, hopefully sooner rather than later.
Did MGM redo the translation, because there are some mistakes in their LaserDisc release.
Does the MGM VHS feature the new cut?
I don't know if it's any use, but the major Bergman movies are slowly coming out in an excellent R2 series from Tartan Video. Persona is scheduled for release (I've seen it on a 'forthcoming titles' feature included in one of the DVDs in the series) but it hasn't come out yet.
As far as I'm aware, this is what's available on DVD from Bergman with English subtitles:
Cries and Whispers
Through a Glass Darkly
The Winter Light
The Magician (aka The Face)
Summer with Monika
Smiles on a Summer Night
From the Life of Marionettes
Fanny and Alexander (the full TV series version)
Cries and Whispers
[all, barring Serpent's Egg and Fanny and Alexander, from Tartan Video]
Also available on R2 is Faithless, directed by Liv Ullman from a script by Bergman
I'm not sure which version is on the LD and VHS. I would think the Laser would have been released some time ago, so I don't think the subtitles would be the new translation.
Do you know when the VHS was released? If it came out within the last year or so, I would suggest it may contain the restored version, but I'm not sure.
Faithless has been released in R1 recently also. I've been meaning to pick it up, in fact.
I too am waiting for Persona, and MGM bandied the title as a mid-summer 2002 release, but alas, nothing.
File under MIA, along with To Live and Die in LA...
Oh, I have the NTSC video release, and picked it up in 2000.
The MGM VHS was released on 10/3/2000. Knowing MGM though, it could easily be a repackaged version of an older VHS release.
Steven, didn't know about the R1 Faithless. It's worth watching - it's v. 'Bergmanesque' and although IMHO not up to Bergman's best (it drags in places) it's better than 95 per cent of the pap that gets foisted on us poor cinema-goers.
I received the following email reply (!) in response to my inquiry:
::does a little dance::
Persona is out in R2 in about a month's time (on Tartan). In addition, a lot of Bergman's early movies are slated for release in the next year or so in R2.
Does MGM have the video rights to any Bergman films other than Shame and the ones that have already been mentioned ?
I don't think so. I believe MGM/UA does control Shame (1968--one of his greatest & bleakest films), which they released on video. Note that Hour of the Wolf (1968), Shame (1968), and The Passion of Anna (1970) form a trilogy (sometimes called the "Island" trilogy"), and it would make sense for MGM/UA to release these all at once. The email said
other Bergman films, including Hour of the Wolf and the Passion of Anna
so it may be that Shame is included but not listed.
Most of the remaining unreleased Bergman films (including Winter Light, Smiles of a Summer Night, Sawdust & Tinsel/Naked Night, Through a Glass Darkly, Summer Interlude, The Virgin Spring, The Silence) all appear to be controlled by Criterion/Home Vision Entertainment. Criterion has released the following Bergman films on DVD: Wild Strawberries, Seventh Seal, Cries & Whispers, Autumn Sonata, The Magic Flute.
Great news. Thanks for the info Brian.
Doing a little searching for Persona and it seems the current plan is for MGM to release the DVD in Novenber.
I had sent email to MGM earlier in the week to inquire about the five Bergman titles which had been rumored for release in November (Persona, Hour of the Wolf, Shame, Passion of Anna, and The Serpent's Egg). Unfortunately, I received the following reply today:
I hope this is only means a short delay, maybe until early 2004. Looks like I'll be picking up the Tartan (R2 PAL) release of Persona in the interim. Damn.
Well, that's a bummer
What a great release day 11/18 might have been with the Bergmans (especially Persona), Paramount's Once Upon a Time in the West, and Criterion's La Strada and Rules of the Game coming out on the same day. I guess it was too good to be true.
I think I am going to wait for the R1 discs patiently. I almost broke down and bought the Tartan discs for the Faith Trilogy, but I am glad I waited. The Criterions were definitely well worth the wait.
It may be too early to despair... aren't November/December titles generally officially scheduled/announced around early September? Or has MGM already announced their lineup through the end of the year?
Maybe I'm being optimistic... but damn, I'm not quite ready to give up on PERSONA yet...!