Ingmar Bergman

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Eric Rohmer

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There is certainly naivete in [the allegory used in The Seventh Seal], but there is some naivete in every fable. It is the naivete proper to the great periods of art—here the Middle Ages, whose flavor Bergman has captured without any adulterating pedantry and thanks to his incomparable skill in transposing into cinematic terms the motifs that furnish him with the iconography on which he draws his inspiration. The figures and the forms he presents are never flat but seem the fruit of an original creation. His art is so frank, so new that we forget it for the problem it embodies. Rarely has the cinema been able to aim so high and realize so fully its ambitions. (p. 135)

Eric Rohmer, "Avec le septième sceau Ingmar Bergman nous offre son Faust" (reprinted by permission of the author), in Arts, April 23-29, 1958 (translated by Kristine Hughie and Birgitta Steene and reprinted as "With 'The Seventh Seal' Ingmar Bergman Offers Us His Faust," in Focus on "The Seventh Seal," edited by Birgitta Steene, Prentice-Hall, Inc., 1972, pp. 134-35).

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