Torment (1944)

ALF SJOBERG

Bil’s rating (out of 5):  BBBB

Original title:  Hets

Sweden, 1944.  Svensk Filmindustri.  Screenplay by .  Cinematography by .  Produced by , .  Music by .  Production Design by .  Costume Design by .  Film Editing by .  

Notable for being the first Ingmar Bergman script produced on film. A young student (an excellent ) crosses paths with his cruel Latin teacher and decides, after much abuse, to take a stand. This does not do much for his academic career, which has been strong up until this point, leading further down the destructive path of his relationship with a melancholy young woman of town () who’s in a bad affair of her own. The connection between these characters is one that will provide Kjellin with incredible anguish later on, but as this is early Bergman, before he was really sinking his teeth into the possibilities of cinema, the main character’s dilemma is not augmented with hours-long treatises on the nature of God and death. The film is, however, richly dramatic, beautifully performed and skillfully photographed, a saturating drama that you will feel satisfied by, and Bergman’s dialogue is already excellent.

Cannes Film Festival Award:  Grand Prize

Venice Film Festival: In Competition

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