... and happy death day, too, I guess, for the Fabulous Swede was born on August 29th, 1915, and died on the same day, 67 years later. Obviously, there is no better excuse for blatant, cheesy, weepy, obsessive fangirling. Thus, I bring you ramblings by moi, then quotes by people who know far more about these things than I do, and last but not least, PICTURES. Most of those I scanned from my own collection, so I really hope there's some you haven't seen yet :). Anyways...
Ingrid Bergman is probably, of all the people I fangirl, the one I feel closest to and maybe the one I can identify best with. I feel, when reading about her, that I can understand what she was about, and I like her. These days, she is mostly remembered for the 'good girl' image she had in the 1940s, but really, she is so much more interesting and complex than just that.
Once, in the late 1940s, Ingrid said that she dreaded going back home (to her first husband), because then she’d have to ‘go back into the cage, sit in the sun, obey Petter, be sober and look eighteen years old’, and I think that was a very accurate description of what not just Petter, but the film-going world expected of her. She had made it big in Hollywood with an impossibly innocent, almost virginal public image - an image she had contributed to herself, because she was too clever not to realize how exactly she was being sold in the USA – and for a while, that worked fine. When she first came to America, after all, she was pretty young and pretty naïve, but throughout the following years, as she got more famous, she adapted and grew up and that image became much more like a cage, because she did smoke and she did drink and she did stay out late and she did a lot of the things other stars did, as well. Part of her problem was that she couldn’t conform anymore to the role the world, the studio, her husband and, perhaps, she herself had created for her; that of a kind of modern Virgin Mary, one star they could safely idolize and name their children after.
And Ingrid was far more than that, in many different ways. She was a lot smarter than people gave her credit for and she could be very cool and level-headed in matters of business, and yet at the same time, too, in her private life, there was this side to her that was deeply insecure and extremely sensitive. She had a healthy dose of common sense, a lot of strength and good humour, and yet at the same time she could be very dramatic, very unhappy and always a little bit lonely.
About this, she once said that her main problem was that in a way, she spent all her life searching for a romance like her parents had had. Her mother and father had both died when she was a young child, but she had read their love-letters when she was eighteen, and she believed that one day, she would find something similar to what they had experienced, and then everything would be alright, but she never did. I think she loved her three husbands very much, and they were three completely different people who were very strong characters in their own completely different ways, but when one tries to find the One True Love of Ingrid’s life, I think the answer would be ‘her work’ more than anything.
She blamed herself for losing Lars, her third husband, because she felt she had failed to give him the time together than he needed so badly. While that was partly due to the great guilt complex she always felt towards her loved ones, that idea was probably partly accurate, as well, and although she understood the problem, she didn’t adapt because she knew that her work was really what she lived for. She did, however, take more than a year off work in the 1960s when her daughter Isabella was seriously ill.
There’s so much more to be said about Ingrid Bergman, but I’ll end here - she was so beautiful and smart and naïve and sweet and cold and warm and reasonable and temperamental and level-headed and melodramatic and talented all at once, and I love her for all those things. She may not have been a saint, but she was undeniably… human.
WARNING. This LJ-cut is probably NOT dial-up friendly. At all. Sorry for that!( Collapse )“Ultimately, most movies remain locked in their period, even if the personality of the star manages to transcend that period. It is only the greatest stars who achieve those half-dozen or so films that remain perpetually seductive, films that render them, in effect, immortal: Casablanca, Gaslight, Spellbound, Notorious, Journey to Italy, Indiscreet, Autumn Sonata.
Ingrid Bergman died in 1982.
Ingrid Bergman lives.”