8.1/10
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Fanny and Alexander (1982)

Fanny och Alexander (original title)
Two young Swedish children experience the many comedies and tragedies of their family, the Ekdahls.

Director:

Writer:

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Siri - Ekdahlska huset
...
Carl Ekdahl - Ekdahlska huset
Pernilla Allwin ...
Fanny Ekdahl - Ekdahlska huset
Kristian Almgren ...
Putte Ekdahl - Ekdahlska huset
Carl Billquist ...
Police Superintendent Jespersson - Ekdahlska huset
Axel Düberg ...
Witness to Bishop's Death - Ekdahlska huset
...
Oscar Ekdahl - Ekdahlska huset
...
Alida - Ekdahlska huset
...
Emilie Ekdahl - Ekdahlska huset
Patricia Gélin ...
Statue - Ekdahlska huset (as Patricia Gelin)
Majlis Granlund ...
Miss Vega - Ekdahlska huset
Maria Granlund ...
Petra Ekdahl - Ekdahlska huset
...
Alexander Ekdahl - Ekdahlska huset
Eva von Hanno ...
Berta - Ekdahlska huset
...
Aunt Emma - Ekdahlska huset

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Storyline

It's the early twentieth century Sweden. Adolescent siblings Alexander and Fanny Ekdahl lead a relatively joyous and exuberant life with their well-off extended paternal family, led by the family matriarch, their grandmother, Helena Ekdahl. The openness of the family culture is exemplified by Helena's now deceased husband ending up becoming best friends with one of her lovers, a Jewish puppet maker named Isak Jacobi, and their Uncle Gustav Adolf's open liaison with one of the family maids, Maj, who everyone in the family adores, even Gustav Adolf's wife, Alma. Between the siblings, Alexander in particular has inherited the family's love of storytelling, his parents and his grandmother who are actors and who manage their own theater. Things change for Alexander and Fanny when their father, Oscar, dies shortly after Christmas 1907. Although she truly does believe she loves him, the children's mother, Emilie, decides to marry Bishop Edvard Vergérus, who she first met as the officiate at ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

En film av Ingmar Bergman

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

| |

Language:

| | |

Release Date:

17 December 1982 (Sweden)  »

Also Known As:

Fanny and Alexander  »

Box Office

Budget:

$6,000,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (TV miniseries)

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Originally, Fanny and Alexander were planned to have a big sister, Amanda, two years older than Alexander, but the character was left out of the film. She does, however, appear in a book based on the screenplay. See more »

Goofs

In Part 2, when the children are woken by their mother screaming after their father has died, he can be seen breathing in some shots. See more »

Quotes

Ekdahlska huset - Alexander Ekdahl: [to his stepfather] Alexander does not wish the Bishop a good night.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Jeopardy!: Episode #22.33 (2005) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Not obviously the work of a master
22 May 2009 | by (the heartland) – See all my reviews

The problem with any great artist is that it becomes easy to rest on one's laurels, become self-indulgent, or settle for mediocrity. After all, the fans will always stick by you.

Fanny and Alexander, Bergman's farewell to the cinema (in more ways than one since it was made for television) is a problematic film - it is a well crafted work, but undistinguished, not nearly as great as some of his past achievements. Can one blame him? Not really - nobody hits a home run every time at bat.

Fanny and Alexander is a long (over 3 hours) Dickensian period piece that lacks much of the trademark Bergman touches. It's well made, but not significantly different from many historical melodramas and made-for-TV mini-series' that were the hallmark of U.S. broadcast television in the 1980s. The story primarily deals with two young siblings and their trials and tribulations following the death of their father. Really it's mostly about the boy, Alexander, as his sister, Fanny is pretty much an ominpresent non-entity in the proceedings. There are also a lot of dead-end subplots featuring the children's aunts, uncles, and other relatives. And, save for a few detours into the metaphysical (mostly in the last 10 minutes), there is little to distinguish it from a run-of-the-mill Victorian soap opera.

The cast - all of them - turn in fine performances, and while I can't really recommend this film whole-heartedly, I really can't knock it either. Perhaps a good time-passer if you are bedridden and need a 3 hour diversion.


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