Bergman, Bergman, Bergman. That’s all that’s been in the Swedish media for the past fortnight. For the first week every night on television was either another documentary, or an old interview, followed by one of his films. Last Friday night they showed his five-hour Fanny and Alexander. There was even one particular documentary that was screened three nights running. Every newspaper had pages of coverage, and had finally been able to rehash all the obituaries that were probably written twenty years ago. The King and the Primer Minister both gave tributes, as well as every actor and director in Sweden. But with his funeral yesterday, maybe the Swedish media will get back to what they do best: reports on teenage binge drinking.
I was certainly shocked by his death: I thought he died years ago. For me, Bergman’s genius lay in his ability to capture the Swedish attitude towards work, and their susceptibility to procrastination. Just watch this:
In Sweden, even Death is happy for an excuse to avoid doing his job.