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Jungfrukällan

The Virgin Spring
Die Jungfrauenquelle

Sweden 1960
produced by
Svensk Filmindustri
directed by Ingmar Bergman
starring Max Von Sydow, Brigitta Valberg, Gunnel Lindblom, Brigitta Pettersson, Axel Düberg, Tor Isedal, Allan Edwall, Ove Porath, Axel Slangus, Gudrun Brost, Oscar Ljung, Tor Borong, Leif Forstenberg
written by Ully Isaksson, based on a traditional story, music by Erik Nordgren, cinematography by Sven Nykvist

review by
Mike Haberfelner

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Somewhen in the 1300s: Naive and spoilt young Karin (Brigitte Pettersson) is told by her father Töre (Max Von Sydow) to bring candles to the church which is many miles away - and she insists to wear her Sunday dress, and insists that her pregnant adopted sister Ingeri (Gunnel Lindblom) - the daughter of a prostitute who is now pregnant without being married, a big no-no in the 1300s - comes with her. However, at about half the way, Ingeri has some premonition and refuses to go any further.

With not a care in the world, Karin rides on, and meets three brothers - two herdsmen (Axel Düberg, Tor Isedal) and a boy (Ove Porath) - whom she befriends and shares her food with. As a thank you however, the two men rape her and kill her ... with Ingeri watching the whole thing.

Later, the three borthers stop at, of all places, at Karin's parents' house and ask for a place for the night - which Töre and his wife Märeta (Brigitta Valberg), not knowing yet about the fate of their daughter, gladly offer. Then though one of the brothers offers Märeta of all things Karin's Sunday dress, and all of a sudden, Märeta knows what has happened and tells Töre ... who gets himself in such a rage that he kills the three brothers, even the little boy who very obciously had nothing to do with it.

Only then does Töre set out to look for the body of his daughter, led by Ingeri, who blames herself for what had happened because she thinks she cursed Karin, whom everyone always preferred to her, especially in her pregnant state ...

Only when Töre sees the dead body of his daughter is he overcome by grief, and by remorse that he killed the three brothers and had thus been no better than them, and he vows to build a church right on the spot his daughter was killed to redeem for his sins ...

 

The Virgin Spring is a very grim portrayal of the Middle Ages, far away from tales of knights and chivalry that usually dominate the lore, instead it puts the dark back into the Dark Ages, a time when superstition prevails and even the way tot he church could be leading into death. And while the film was apparently made on the cheap, it's nevertheless one of the most impressive portrayals of the time.

 

By the way, the key plot elements of the story - rapists and killers visiting the parents of the girl they just raped and getting their just dessert - would regularly pop up in trash and sex-and-crime films, first and foremost of course Wes Craven's Last House on the Left.

 

review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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Thanks for watching !!!

 

 

Robots and rats,
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love and death and everything in between,
Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

is all of that.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to
-
a collection of short stories and mini-plays
ranging from the horrific to the darkly humourous,
from the post-apocalyptic
to the weirdly romantic,
tales that will give you a chill and maybe a chuckle, all thought up by
the twisted mind of
screenwriter and film reviewer
Michael Haberfelner.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

the new anthology by
Michael Haberfelner

 

Out now from
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On the same day
a Burglar wants to kill you
and your Ex wants
to make up ...
... and for the life of it,
you can't decide
WHICH IS WORSE!!!

 

A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
Melanie Denholme
directed by
David V.G. Davies
written by
Michael Haberfelner
starring
Ryan Hunter and
Rudy Barrow

out now on DVD