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Movie lovers will always return to The Seventh Seal, regarded by many as one of the greatest films of all time. Bergman combines symbolic imagery, realistic details, and wry humor for the moving medieval tale of a knight searching for God in a world ravaged by plague. As the honorable knight, his cynical squire, a troupe of carefree actors, and black-robed Death, a superb cast of Bergman regulars portray the cruelty and charity that coexisted during this dark era.
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Ingmar Bergman's 1956 film has been parodied by everyone fromWoody Allen to Bill and Ted's Bogus Journey, but it remains one of the strangest and richest classics of world cinema. Max Von Sydow plays a knight returning from the Crusades to encounter an apocalyptic scenario inspired by the Book of Genesis. He plays chess with Death (Bengt Ekerot), sees a manacled witch, watches a band of flagellants go by--all of it foretelling an inevitable end to life. Unabashedly allegorical and lyrical and existing in a world unto itself, the film is enormously mesmerizing no matter what one thinks of the weighty meanings Bergman has attached to it all. --Tom Keogh
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