BERGMAN COMEDY GETS BAD NOTICES; Critics in Stockholm Deplore As for All These Women
STOCKHOLM, June 16 —Ingmar Bergman‘s new comedy, As for All These Women, which opened here last night, was received coldly by Stockholm newspaper critics. “Dull” and “harmless” are two words used in reviews today.
The story was written by Mr. Bergman and Erland Josephson. It deals with the problem of a critic who tries to write a biography of a dead cellist. The dead man, a renowned cello player, is never shown in the film.
The audience gets to know him on the strength of accounts by his wife and mistresses, who find different qualities in him.
The time is the Roaring Twenties. The place is somewhere on the French Riviera, and leading the musical score is “Yes, We Have No Bananas.”
Nils Beyer, writing in Stockholm’s Tidningen, said today: “The film was a disappointment, and, to tell the truth, so dull I could hardly wait for the ending. But one must, of course, be prepared that even this picture will be met with cheers by devout admirers.”
Tidningen had something good to say about the leading man, Jarl Kulle: “He shows artistic clownsmanship in the highest degree.”
Gunnar Unger in Svenska Dagbladet wrote: “Laughs get stuck in the throat and smiles in the mouth because the comedy is so far‐fetched. But it is ridiculous to say that this is the worst of Bergman’s movies. He and his remarkable team of artists and technicians cannot possibly make a bad film. But one has the right to say that this is the most trivial film he has ever made.”
Mauritz Edstroem in Dagens Nyheter gave credit to Mr. Kulle and the leading actresses, Harriet Andersson and Bibi Andersson. He thinks these three belong to a special class of actors, but adds: “The terrible thing is that the film is very seldom funny.”
Jurgen Schildt, writing in Aftonbladet, said he does not know what one can be amused about in the film except possibly Mr. Kulle’s fall into a swimming pool. But Mr. Schildt found the color magnificent and the setting expensive. He added:
“As for all these women, they will probably be exported to America this fall.”
The New York Times, June 17, 1964