In the midst of a civil war, former violinists Jan and Eva Rosenberg, who have a tempestuous marriage, run a farm on a rural island. In spite of their best efforts to escape their homeland, the war impinges on every aspect of their lives.
Two estranged sisters, Ester and Anna, and Anna's 10-year-old son travel to the Central European country on the verge of war. Ester becomes seriously ill and the three of them move into a hotel in a small town called Timoka.
During civil war, two musicians retreat to a rural island to farm. They are apolitical; a neighbor sometimes gives them a fish; wine is a luxury. They love each other, but there are problems: the war upsets Jan, he is weepy, too sensitive; Eva wants children, he does not. The war suddenly arrives: rebels attack, neighbors die. When the other side restores order, Jan and Eva are arrested as collaborators. After frightening and roughing them up, the local colonel releases them; then he begins appearing at their farmhouse: to talk or to pursue Eva? He gives her money. The rebels return; chaos ensues. Jan becomes violent and murderous; they flee. Can they escape? If so, to what?Written by
Although generally regarded as one of Ingmar Bergman's finest films, the director himself was largely unhappy with the film. In his book "Images: My Life in Film", Bergman wrote that he felt the script was uneven, resulting in a poor first half. See more »
Eva is not wearing any socks when Jacobi arrives but several times during his visit she can be seen wearing a couple of black socks and no socks at all again. See more »
Sometimes everything seems just like a dream. It's not my dream, it's somebody else's. But I have to participate in it. How do you think someone who dreams about us would feel when he wakes up. Feeling ashamed?
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When Liv Ullman's character says, "I feel like I'm in someone else's dream and they're going to be ashamed when they wake up," she is referring not only to being an unwilling player in society's war games, she is referring to being an ignorant participant in life itself. At the film's end, when she says that she had a dream that she had a child and she was trying to take care of it, but she forgot something else, the implication is that she has forgotten what she has learned in the war she's just survived, that like her own mother before her, she will be unable to pass on any vital lessons to her own child. And, therefore, the cycle of the shame of ignorance will continue...ad infinitum...
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