When disillusioned Swedish knight Antonius Block Max von Sydow returns home from the Crusades to find his country in the grips of the Black Death, he challenges Death Bengt Ekerot to a chess match for his life. When disillusioned Swedish knight Antonius Block returns home from the Crusades to find his country in the grips of the Black Death, he challenges Death to a chess match for his life. The dusk, the bowl of wild strawberries, the bowl of milk, Joseph with his lute. Tormented by the belief that God does not exist, Block sets off on a journey, meeting up with traveling players Jof and his wife, Mia, and becoming determined to evade Death long enough to commit one redemptive act while he still lives. The Knight and Death play as the cultural turmoil envelopes the people around them as they try, in different ways, to deal with the upheaval the plague has caused.
Whether it was intentional or not, I think Seventh Seal is a very personal film. Tormented by the belief that God does not exist, Block sets off on a journey, meeting up with traveling players Jof Nils Poppe and his wife, Mia Bibi Andersson , and becoming determined to evade Death long enough to commit one redemptive act while he still lives. Synopsis A Knight and his squire are home from the crusades. Von Sydow's long face makes a perfect portrait of stoicism, and the incredibly versatile Bjornstrand scores again in a change of pace role. This family is happy because they love each other. The knight challenges Death to a chess game for his life. Advertisement Continuing on their way, the knight and squire encounter a troupe of performers, including a couple named Joseph and Mary who have a young child.
Club members also get access to our members-only section on RogerEbert. Use direct links to download or Watch Online. Bergman's work has an arc. The climax of the film is of course the final 'duel' with Death. I think if you are an atheist, this film is going to please you, because clearly the sanest characters in this film are either indifferent or deny God's existence entirely.
Strong performances from everyone involved bring humanity to the film. Perhaps, Antonius reasons, the answers only come from Death. Black Death is sweeping their country. Death accepts, knowing that Block cannot escape his fate, and the two begin their game. They represent the simple joys and hopes of ordinary life. It struck a very personal reaction in me, however uninformed that reaction might be. The Seventh Seal is not subtle in raising it's questions, that's for sure.
And he had the confidence to end his film, not with a statement or a climax, but with an image. It struck me, that in the final moments, when each character faces there own mortality right in front of them, that the strongest and purest reaction of them all, is the one from the squire, the atheist voice in the film. It's why I believe, Bergman, couldn't stand to watch it later in life, after he had reconciled with his parents. Death personified wants to get him, too, but block is not ready to die. They visit a seemingly deserted farmstead, where the squire catches a man named Raval trying to steal the bracelet of a plague victim.
The Ebert Club is our hand-picked selection of content for Ebert fans. The little I know of Bergman's youth, the Paladin Antonius Block seems to symbolize Bergman's last struggles with his strict religious instruction as a child. The knight questions the girl about the devil, who should know if God exists. On later viewings the craft of the film remains bracing and its greater concerns stay provocative without becoming heavy-handed. The knight challenges Death to a chess game for his life. This Raval is the very theologian who, years earlier, convinced the knight to join the Crusades.
I think this is why later in life, Bergman disowned this film. I think he saw too clearly, how much of a very personal statement it was and how in some cases it was a vindictive film against his parents. From a distance, Mia and Jof can observe how death disappears with the prancing small group. The knight challenges Death to a chess game for his life. But the distraction causes the death sets block checkmate. Block and Jons move across the countryside in the hopes of finding safety in Block's castle, but Death is always around the corner, biding his time. I especially liked Jöns, Antonius Block's misogynist squire - the best performance in the movie by Gunnar Björnstrand.
He offers Death a bargain: They will play chess for the knight's soul. Tormented by the belief that God does not exist, Block sets off on a journey, meeting up with traveling players Jof Nils Poppe and his wife, Mia Bibi Andersson , and becoming determined to evade Death long enough to commit one redemptive act while he still lives. Black Death is sweeping their country. There were very frightening animals: serpents in paradise, Balaam's ass, Jonah's whale, the eagle of Revelation. Less austere and more visually striking than some of Bergman's later films. Still, we must admit to really liking this one. Perhaps that is why it is out of fashion at the moment.
The death granted him a reprieve for the duration of a chess game. Ingmar Bergman's The Seventh Seal symbolic duel is undoubtedly one of his most popular masterpieces. Not as anything is wrong with that. Finding a streaming service to buy, rent, download, or watch the Ingmar Bergman-directed movie via subscription can be challenging, so we here at Moviefone want to do right by you. A Knight and his squire are home from the crusades.