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Posts Tagged ‘Swedish cinema’

The Phantom Carriage

Wednesday, January 4th, 2023

THE PHANTOM CARRIAGE is a phantom movie that came well before PHANTOM THREAD, THE PHANTOM MENACE, or even my man THE PHANTOM. In fact it hails from way back in the silent era of film. Obviously 1921 is a long time ago, but it was a little ways into the movie before it clicked in my brain that holy shit this movie is a-hundred-and-one-years-old. That’s, like, pretty old. Trends, hairstyles, etc. have changed.

It’s also Swedish, which is a whole other thing. I’ve watched HÄXAN, THE VIRGIN SPRING, THRILLER: A CRUEL PICTURE, LET THE RIGHT ONE IN and the DRAGON TATTOO trilogy from my Ikea couch while eating Swedish Fish and wishing I had a Dolph Lundgren poster, but otherwise it’s a culture I’m completely ignorant about. Wikipedia describes PHANTOM CARRIAGE writer/director/star Victor Sjöström as “Sweden’s most prominent director in the Golden Age of Silent Film in Europe.” He was such an influence on also-very-influential Swedish director Ingmar Bergman that Bergman cast him in the lead of WILD STRAWBERRIES and got the idea of his most internationally recognizable character – Death in THE SEVENTH SEAL – straight from THE PHANTOM CARRIAGE. (read the rest of this shit…)

Blood Tracks

Wednesday, October 17th, 2018

I noticed there are a couple still-only-on-VHS horror movies that are heavy metal themed, and that also seems to be a motif through some of the modern horror I’ve been enjoying like DEVIL’S CANDY and MANDY, so I decided to take a look at them in this special Slasher Search investigation (in association with Tape Raider). This first one is from 1985 and it’s about a hair metal or whatever type of band who make two major mistakes

1) For some reason thinking that a remote mountain area is a cool place to film their new video

2) Choosing the remote mountain area that’s protected by a family of anti-social brutes.

3) You know what, I’m gonna count #1 as two mistakes because why they hell did they think this would look cool in a video? It doesn’t even look cool in a horror movie. (read the rest of this shit…)

The Girl Who Played With Fire

Tuesday, November 2nd, 2010

tn_girlwhoplayedwithfireAfter THE GIRL WITH THE DRAGON TATTOO I was real excited to see what would happen in the next installment. The second one starts with a flashback to the Netherlands in the 17th century. Scarlett Johansson plays a maid who goes to work for the famed painter Vermeer (Colin Firth). He finds out she’s interested in art so he starts teaching her how to mix paints. I really wasn’t sure what this had to do with Lisbeth Salander and I was kind of bored so I turned off THE GIRL WITH THE PEARL EARRING and skipped to THE GIRL WHO PLAYED WITH FIRE.
(read the rest of this shit…)

The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo

Wednesday, July 7th, 2010

tn_girlwiththedragonThey say THE GIRL WITH THE DRAGON TATTOO is an international phenomenon. The whole world has Dragon Tattoo Fever and Steig Larssonmania. This is a Swedish mystery thriller, the first in an already completed trilogy adapted from the hugely popular books written by this guy Larsson and published after he died. Some people die and their family is horrified to find their porno stash, this guy dies and they find 3 (three) smash hit mystery novels. It’s ridiculous. Like anything that’s popular around the world (cursed videotapes, drifting, Lambada, quiet preteen Swedish vampire dramas) the Americans want in on that action, so they’re already working on an American version. I’d be annoyed, except it’s David Fincher directing, so let him do what he wants.

Anyway, this review here is of the original movie version that no matter what will be preferred by Swedes and by Americans who want to rebel against The Man by rejecting his popular entertainment in favor of foreign product. (read the rest of this shit…)

Thriller: A Cruel Picture

Sunday, October 1st, 2006

In Sweden back in the ’70s there was some crazy shit going on, just like they had in the woods there in the 1800s. Take for example the case of Frigga (Christina Lindberg), the subject of this cruel picture. She’s just an innocent farmgirl who keeps running into some filthy scumbags. In the opening scene she is a little girl being spun around by an old man who you assume is her grandpa or something. Then the guy keels over and blood pours out of his mouth. I don’t understand why, but this somehow symbolizes that the guy raped her. Don’t get me wrong, I am very, very glad that they chose to depict that through symbolism instead of showing it, but I got no clue what that’s all about. It’s a Swede thing.

The trauma of that opening scene causes her to be mute and, the neighbors say, not quite right in the head. She is seeing a special doctor for her troubles but one day she misses the bus and gets picked up by a sleazy hipster asshole who takes her to dinner and hits on her. (read the rest of this shit…)

The Virgin Spring

Sunday, September 3rd, 2006

or Max Von Sydow’s Badass Revenge

Recently on The Ain’t It Cool News I reviewed this movie CHAOS, which is a rip-off of LAST HOUSE ON THE LEFT (not on purpose, I am assured by the filmatists) which itself was an update of THE VIRGIN SPRING. One of the talkbackers, Readingwriter, was annoyed that I didn’t mention VIRGIN SPRING in the review. He had a good point that it would’ve been interesting to compare all three of them, not just those two, and I’m sure I would’ve done that if I had actually seen VIRGIN SPRING. But I hadn’t.

Until now. Today, I return to the topic armed with a new, more Swedish perspective of the classic revenge tale. (read the rest of this shit…)