The Virgin Spring
A stark, stirring tale of a young girl’s rape and her father’s revenge.
Dir Ingmar Bergman
With Max von Sydow, Birgitta Valberg, Gunnel Lindblom, Birgitta Pettersson
Bergman revisited the medieval world – caught between the superstitions of paganism and Christianity – for this stark, stirring but never sensationalist tale of a young girl’s rape and her father’s revenge. Aided by Sven Nykvist’s superb camerawork, the carefully controlled direction makes everything feel absolutely authentic even as the use of symbolism (fire and water especially) pushes the narrative towards the realm of moral fable.