A Video Essay by Maged Nader
In 1967, film director and critic Stig Bjorkman edited an exceptionally long interview of Bergman into a book and published it under Bergman on Bergman. In 1987, Bergman wrote the autobiography The Magic Lantern and in 1995, as he came closer to his 80th birthday, he wrote Images: My Life in Film, in which he revisits his own films through a critical lens. He says in the introduction how he finds Bergman on Bergman deceptive; that his interviewer approached him with the logic of writing a book, while he was really "piecing together an image of a dinosaur with the approval of the dinosaur himself." The book presents a sharp critical look at the films, with no detailed narration on the execution process; only a few notes and daily inscriptions written during the shooting.
Bergman did not make autobiographical films, yet his films constantly adopted repeated themes that came from his personal influences, and his questions around God's existence, and human frailty, as well as being affected by patriarchal and religious authority.
It is through these daily notes and inscriptions, and his own memoirs, that the screening comes through, looking at the cinematic moments that Bergman retrieved from his own life to place in his films. This will take place through reading segments of the book accompanied with a screening of the aforementioned scenes.