Scenes from a Marriage

Watch Scenes from a Marriage

  • TV-PG
  • 1973
  • 5 hr 10 min
  • 8.5  (17,175)

Scenes from a Marriage is a 1973 Swedish television miniseries directed by Ingmar Bergman. It stars Liv Ullmann and Erland Josephson as a couple, Marianne and Johan, whose seemingly perfect marriage starts to unravel over the course of ten years. Bibi Andersson also has a supporting role as a friend of the couple. The story is separated into six episodes, each depicting a different point in Marianne and Johan's relationship. The first episode, "Innocence and Panic," introduces the couple as happily married and successful professionals with two young children. The second episode, "The Art of Sweeping Things Under the Rug," shows cracks in their relationship as they try to keep secrets from each other. In the third episode, "Paula," Marianne seeks comfort in her friend Paula after discovering Johan's infidelity.

The fourth episode, "The Vale of Tears," is perhaps the most intense and emotional of the series. Marianne and Johan separate and engage in a brutal argument that leaves them both shattered. The fifth episode, "The Illiterates," has the couple coming to terms with their separation and trying to move on with their lives. Finally, the sixth episode, "In the Middle of Life," reunites Marianne and Johan after several years apart, but their reunion is bittersweet.

Scenes from a Marriage is a deeply personal and introspective exploration of love, marriage, and the complexities of human relationships. Through the struggles of Marianne and Johan, Bergman delves into the nature of commitment, communication, and the power dynamics inherent in every relationship.

The series is shot in a minimalist style, with sparse sets and few other actors. This allows for the focus to be entirely on the characters and their emotional states. Ullmann and Josephson are both exceptional, delivering raw and nuanced performances that draw the viewer in and make the emotional weight of their characters' struggles palpable.

The script is a triumph of naturalistic dialogue and insightful observations about human behavior. The conversations between Marianne and Johan are often painful and uncomfortable to witness, as they lay bare their deepest fears and insecurities. Yet, they are also poignant and illuminating, offering a profound glimpse into the complexities of sustaining a long-term relationship.

Scenes from a Marriage is a challenging and thought-provoking work that eschews easy answers or sentimentality. It is a penetrating exploration of the human condition, offering no quick fixes or simple solutions, but instead forcing us to confront the messy realities of love and commitment. It is a masterpiece of filmmaking that continues to resonate with audiences today.

Scenes from a Marriage is a 1973 romance movie with a runtime of 5 hours and 10 minutes. It has received mostly positive reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 8.5.

Scenes from a Marriage
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  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    5 hr 10 min
  • IMDB Rating
    8.5  (17,175)