Autumn Sonata

It may have been unfair last week for us to complain about the first film Criterion released from a female director not even passing the Bechdel Test. I'm sorry that we spent a lot of time talking about Liliana Cavini's The Night Porter in terms of her being a woman not doing what we thought she should have done. Perhaps we treated the film as if Criterion was trying to say something about female auteurs by presenting its first one 59 films into the series and by choosing Cavini first. After Armageddon we should have learned that whatever Criterion may be trying to say with certain releases, it's best not to delve too deeply into it as it's more than likely nonsense anyway.

This week we're talking about Ingmar Bergman's 1978 Autumn Sonata, a movie that not only passes the Bechdel test with flying colors, but is also really emotionally draining. But in a good way? We also avoid reading too much into Criterion's release order again, since the release after The Night Porter has a strong principally-female cast unlike anything we've seen in the Collection so far. Criterion's spine numbers are challenging us to compare the two films, and that's really unfair, because anyone put up against an Ingmar Bergman masterpiece will fail. We try to avoid that, and instead focus on the heart-wrenching character study on it's own amazing merits instead of on the merit of being infinitely better than the movie we'd just previously watched.