The success of this film gave Bergman the freedom that would lead to his most iconic films. This playful and frivolous side of the director connected with both audiences and critics and this film was well tooled to his usual stock company of actors at the time. The story was inspired by Shakespeare but ironically this film would prove to be inspirational to many future filmmakers. Top notch.
Smiles of a Summer Night walks a fine line of being a screwball comedy and an unrelenting deconstruction of love & attraction. Ingmar Bergman aces both, delivering a film packed with delightfully sharp wit, elegant pacing but with a narrative that remains audacious throughout. I loved it and I eagerly look forward to watching more of Bergman's works in the future.
There are some incredible scenes here that deserve to stay in film history: the Russian roulette, Eva Dahlbeck and her two lovers in the bedroom, the last dinner and the retractable bed of course. I love the moment when comedy/drama meets the fantasy genre during the wine tasting scene. Strongly recommended.
Not only a comedy, but a comedy with all the classical hallmarks of comedy, SMILES OF A SUMMER NIGHT nonetheless becomes, due to its overall seriousness, a film of disarmingly profound nobility. It is so outrageously great that it is practically harmful. Though its wisdom is a kind of encompassing, paternalistic wisdom, much of the considerable humour of this lively chiaroscuro masterpiece is based in emasculation.
Hilarious romance, with slightly serious undertones that touch on Bergman favorites such as faith, desire, restraint, and pretention. The base, lusty maid and stableman that close the film seem to embrace an earthy, honest humanism that the bourgeoisie only brush through their formal trappings. Music and effects overdone & some makeup is questionable. Dinner scene & landscapes gorgeous. Wonderful acting, esp Dahlbeck
★★★ / DCP/ Bergman’s amusing sex farce has a brooding underbelly populated with unhappy devious characters. For me the first half lulls, while the second, as the characters arrive at the estate brims with inventive charm, such as the sexual frenzy of the priest in training, the foiled suicide, Harriet Anderson’s lusty Petra. A rare, successful venture into comedy for Bergman.
A flawless comedy, perfectly written, staged and performed. At the same time light and bitter, every character is lovable despite (and because of) his or her own flaws; at the end of the game, it feels like everything piece's gone in its right place. Fun, smart, sweet. A delight.