TIFF review: Searching For Ingmar Bergman

Margarethe von Trotta's essay film is an affectionate portrait of the Swedish cinema giant

SEARCHING FOR INGMAR BERGMAN DOCS D: Margarethe von Trotta. Germany/ France. 99 min. Sep 13, 5:45 pm, TBLB 2 Sep 14, 12:45 pm, TBLB 2 Sep 15, 9:30 pm, TBLB 3. See listing. Rating: NNN

Von Trotta’s personal essay, complete with key interviews and a multitude of film clips, is an affectionate portrait that rekindles the flame of one of cinema’s towering figures.

Von Trotta first discovered Ingmar Bergman’s films when she moved to Paris in 1960 and credits him for inspiring her to be a director. Liv Ullmann and other Bergman collaborators provide working anecdotes. Olivier Assayas and other filmmakers cite his influence.

Von Trotta dissects the films and tosses off insights: Bergman was more interested in his own childhood than in his own nine children, for example. What we’re ultimately left with is the power of the films themselves, still radiant and vigorous. 

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