- Rated: G
- Run Time: 2 hours, 15 minutes
- Video: Color
- Released: April 18, 2000
- Originally Released: 1975
- Label: Criterion
Encoding: Region 0 (Worldwide) Encoding
Packaging: Keep Case
Color Digital Transfer
Rarely-Heard Stereo Score
Optional English Subtitles
Performers, Cast and Crew:
USA Today - 07/31/2007
"This sprightly version of Mozart's opera is a charming achievement for Bergman..."
Ingmar Bergman has stated that THE MAGIC FLUTE had long since been an inspiration to him by the time he directed this movie version of an actual staging of Mozart's opera. In Emanuel Schikaneder's libretto--performed here in Swedish instead of German--Prince Tamino (Josef Köstlinger) is sent by the mysterious and powerful Queen of the Night (Birgit Nordin) to rescue her daughter, Pamina (Irma Urrila), from the sorcerer Sarastro (Ulrik Cold), who has kidnapped the girl. Tamino is aided on his mission by the bird catcher Papageno (Håkan Hagegård), an endearing buffoon (and arguably the opera's most popular character) who wants nothing more than to find himself a loving wife. The director presents a shortened version of the story, enhanced with a Freudian plot element (of sorts), while also giving the piece a slight overhaul for a more modern, less politically questionable feel. Bergman shows the goings-on onstage, often zooming in for close-ups of the performers' interaction with one another, interspersed with shots of individual faces in the audience. The actors were mostly chosen for their appearance and stage presence rather than their vocal prowess, though Hagegård has been singled out by critics for his fine performance and went on to enjoy a distinguished music career.
THE MAGIC FLUTE is Ingmar Bergman's wonderfully magic adaptation of Mozart's immortal, last opera. Bergman's acclaimed version tells the story of the efforts of a young prince to save a beautiful princess from the dark forces of evil. The production was originally made for Swedish television, with Bergman's aim being to reach as wide an audience as possible while capturing the spirit of the opera's first performance in 1791.
Classical Music |
- This film was made for Swedish television (shown January 1, 1975) and released theatrically in the U.S.
- Estimated budget: $650,000.
- Bergman made many cuts in the opera's libretto and also added a plot point of his own--one that explained the troubled relationship between the Queen of the Night and Sarastro.