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3.9
2,024 Ratings

Summer with Monika

Sommaren med Monika

Directed by Ingmar Bergman
Sweden, 1953
Drama

Synopsis

Harry Lund is a nineteen-year-old man who meets Monika, a romantic, reckless and rebellious seventeen-year-old, and they fall in love. They leave their families and jobs in their small town, Harry gets his father’s boat and they spend the summer together in an isolated island.

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Summer with Monika Directed by Ingmar Bergman
With this film, indeed, over the course of its 96-minute runtime, one sees a progression from the perfectly capable Bergman before, to the more profoundly reflective Bergman to come. Certainly, there would still be lighter fare in the Bergman canon — the back-to-back A Lesson in Love (1954) and Dreams (1955), as two immediate examples — but like the tragically quixotic youth of Summer with Monika, Bergman’s cinema had entered a phase of pronounced maturity.
October 25, 2017
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Andersson imbues the role with an energy that is both preternatural and wholly organic. When Harry jumps and shouts and acts wild, it’s a performance. He is playacting rebellion. Monika seems at home in that wildness. Freedom suits her. However we might judge her final act, it’s impossible to spend an hour and a half watching her live, so naturally and irresistibly, and wish to see that freedom tempered.
July 17, 2015
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The recent DVD release by Criterion finally makes available to American audiences one of Bergman’s very best films and perhaps his most influential—for European filmmakers, if not American ones. The movie’s frank eroticism resulted in its release here, in the mid-fifties, in mutilated form as an exploitation film. In France, however, it provided the (young male) film critics who would become the directors of the French New Wave with an inspiring model of intimate realism.
July 17, 2012
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