Summer with Monika

Sommaren med Monika

Ingmar Bergman, Sweden, 1953


Ingmar Bergman makes a radical choice when the two central characters choose to escape their everyday urban life and, on arriving on the island, take to the wilds. He chooses to loose both the characters and their story for one scene. Instead of choosing to show something happening to the characters, he chooses to show a scene of nature, where the only action is meteorological – clouds come, it rains, the rain stops and the sun comes back out again. Despite the lack of human characters in this scene it has a start, a middle and end, and, offers a sense of dramatic progression. It allows Bergman to say that the weather has become an essential component on their new, natural life on the island.

The critic Serge Daney sees the essential essence of cinema and the joy of the spectator reflected in these meteorological events: “I believe exclusively in the phenomenological progression of things, which, to me, is sufficient enough – After the rain comes the sun and after the sun comes the rain.”