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High Tension

Sånt händer inte här

Restored for the centenary of Ingmar Bergman’s birth, the espionage drama that he requested to remain unshown during his lifetime finally returns to the screen.

Dir Ingmar Bergman
Prod Helge Hagerman
Scr Herbert Grevenius
With Signe Hasso, Alf Kjellin, Ulf Palme
Sweden
1950
84min
Prod Co AB Svensk Filmindustri
Subtitles

Having celebrated the great Swedish auteur’s work earlier in the year, the BFI is now pleased to present one of a limited number of screenings permitted of this long ‘missing’ thriller. The script, by occasional Bergman collaborator Herbert Grevenius, sees an authoritarian foreign power deploying undercover agents in Sweden to try and bring back (or otherwise silence) refugees and defectors; if the topical, tortuous tale of political intrigue failed to arouse the director’s full enthusiasm, the film is nevertheless polished, pacy and pleasingly bleak. Moreover, though it’s clearly less personal than Bergman’s other work, it remains especially impressive for the contribution of his regular cinematographer Gunnar Fischer, who blends crisp noir-style chiaroscuro and highly atmospheric use of Stockholm locations to superb effect.

Geoff Andrew

Additional information

Restored by the Swedish Film Institute in 2K.

Photo credit: AB Svensk Filmindustri

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