Saturday, November 6, 2010

Susanne (1960)

Susanne is a normal story about a well-behaved girl who finds booze and love, falls in love with a boy, gets in a car crash, becomes brain damaged and transforms into a chain-smoking slut who gets pregnant and then finds happiness in family-life. Directed, produced and written by doctor Kit Colfach and his wife Elsa. A morality tale about the dangers exposed to the Swedish youth!

Honestly, even in its primitive state of storytelling, it’s a very entertaining movie – especially the first half when Susanne is exploring her newfound freedom as a cute teenager. It slowly gets darker and more documentary in style. After the car accident, which is graphic for the time, we’re treated to some graphic real surgery footage and Susanne being a real bitch both towards friends and parents. Then she gets pregnant, and of course there’s real footage of a birth (not with the actress of course).

The style is simple, many shots is often out of focus and sometimes the camera seem to be somewhere else than filming the important thing in the scene. But this works for the story and it makes everything feel more realistic. Because of technical trouble, the whole movie is dubbed afterwards by other actors. They hired a deaf lip-reading expert to translate the mouth movements, which works so-so.

The symbolism is strong, it goes from the green Swedish countryside further into the grey concrete houses and in the end, when Susanne has gone thru hell but realized that she really loves her baby and her husband, family is everything. A little bit to right wing for me of course, but this was a different time in Sweden.

Now Klubb Super 8 has released a wonderful DVD of this movie, complete with English subtitles for those outside Sweden that wants to experience a classic piece of warning-movie. The print is very good, if you think about how obscure this movie is. The best thing is the brilliant commentary track with Susanne Ulfsäter, who plays Susanne, and her real-life daughter Lotten Sundgren. Lotten is a film journalist and asks so many good questions to her mother, and brings us a lot of very interesting facts about the movie. It’s a pity it’s only in Swedish.

A moralistic exploitation-movie made by an avid golfer/doctor – what can go wrong with that?


Patrick B said...

I want to see this! Sounds great.

Anonymous said...

Sounds interesting.
I found a store with a lot of interesting movies. Have you ever bought from this site?

Ninja Dixon said...

Actually, I bought one or two movies from there - but it's a bootleg site and I only buy stuff like that if there's not other choice :)

dfordoom said...

It sounds like just the sort of thing I'd love!

Ninja Dixon said...

It was worth watching, but maybe more for us Swedes - or maybe not, I have no idea. But I liked it a lot :)

Rickard said...

Do buy it!
Klubb Super 8 sells internationally!
Check out the webshop via: