Review of Persona (1966)

Moving picture, 83 minutes

An actor stops speaking. A young nurse cares for her, speaking interminably, as if laying siege to her listening patient.

Archetypal “art” cinema by Bergman, letting mimesis bleed vaguely into impressionist dreams and pop-psychological puzzles with very few characters and almost no action.

Not necessarily profound, but very nicely executed. In that regard, it’s a major improvement upon the director’s The Silence (1963), cleaning up its symbolism while adding the para-narrative cinematic values of Antonioni and the creativity of the French New Wave. The first five minutes are among the few examples of New-Wave meta I enjoy.

References here: The Bitter Tears of Petra von Kant (1972).

moving picture fiction