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The seventh seal

(DVD - 2009 - Swedish)
Average Rating: 4 stars out of 5.
The seventh seal


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Antonius Block is a knight, who along with his squire, are returning home from the crusades. Black Death is sweeping their country. As they approach home, Death appears to the knight and tells him it is his time. Antonius challenges Death to a chess game for his life. Antonius and Death play as the cultural turmoil envelopes the people around them as they try, in different ways, to deal with the upheaval that the plague has caused.
Statement of Responsibility: A.B. Svensk Filmindustri ; director and scenarist, Ingmar Bergman
Title: The seventh seal
[videorecording]
Publisher: [Irvington, NY] :, Criterion Collection,, [2009]
Edition: Special ed
Characteristics: 2 videodiscs (97 min.) :,sd., b&w ;,4 3/4 in. +,1 booklet.
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Report This Aug 08, 2013
  • xaipe rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

The story of a medieval knight and a game of chess he plays with Death during a time when the Black Plague swept the land. There is no "storyline." The narrative exists in a larger structure of images or allegories made literal. I saw this more years ago than I can remember and yet certain images remain vivid in my memory: the image of Death and the Knight playing chess, and the final scene of the Dance of Death. It was parodied by Woody Allen who also greatly admired it. Rich in images and allegories, but not for the faint-hearted. Its challenge to the existence of God is dated, but still relevant. So many films since its release are derivative, so worth watching for cinephiles.

Scott Walker did a song about the film around 1969. Same title. He tells the story of the knight in five dramatic minutes. You might like it.

If you are interested we talked about this movie at the Carlingwood Library Film Club. We discuss three movies a month and we meet on the 2nd Tuesday of the Month.

Report This Apr 04, 2013
  • cerasokelso rated this: 1 stars out of 5.

Interesting concept, however I found it slow and boring, luckily the movie wasn't that long.

Report This Nov 20, 2012
  • yumsushi rated this: 2 stars out of 5.

Though full of symbolism and an important message, I found the overall presentation boring.

Report This Jan 31, 2011
  • durogoff rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

An absolute masterpiece. Bergman proved that you can do philosophy with a camera. Outstanding!

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