Shame (1968) Ingmar Bergman

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Shame (Swedish: Skammen) is a 1968 Swedish drama film written and directed by Ingmar Bergman, and starring Liv Ullmann and Max von Sydow. Ullmann and von Sydow play Eva and Jan, a politically uninvolved couple and former violinists whose home comes under threat by civil war. They are accused by one side of sympathy for the enemy, and their relationship deteriorates while the couple flees. The story explores themes of shame, moral decline, self-loathing and violence.

The film was shot on Fårö, beginning in 1967, employing miniature models for the combat scenes. Shame was shot and released during the Vietnam War, although Bergman denied it was a commentary on the real-life conflict. He instead expressed interest in telling the story of a “little war”.

Shame won a few honors, including for Ullmann’s performance. It is sometimes considered the second in a series of thematically-related films, preceded by Bergman’s 1968 Hour of the Wolf, and followed by the 1969 The Passion of Anna.

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