Dreams (1955)

dreams poster 1955 movie
7.5 Overall Score
Story: 7/10
Acting: 8/10
Visuals: 7/10

Bergman makes average stories interesting

Plot is lacking

Movie Info

Movie Name:  Dreams

Studio:  Sandrews

Genre(s):  Drama

Release Date(s):  August 22, 1955 (Sweden)/May 31, 1960 (US)

MPAA Rating:  Not Rated

dreams 1955 kvinnodrom eva dahlbeck ingmar bergman

A trip to the city will be fun I’m sure

Model agency owner Susanne (Eva Dahlbeck) is travelling to Gothenburg for a shoot with her top model Doris (Harriet Andersson) who has just broken up with her boyfriend Palle (Sven Lindberg).  When Doris meets an older man named Otto Sönderby (Gunnar Björnstrand) who seems infatuated with her, she finds her day turned upside down.  Meanwhile, Suzanne finds herself reconnecting with her former lover Henrik (Ulf Palme) which could mean a rekindling of their feelings.

Written and directed by Ingmar Bergman, Dreams (Kvinnodröm) is a Swedish drama.  Following Bergman’s A Lesson in Love in 1954, the film was met with mixed reviews and was collected by the Criterion Collection as part of Ingmar Bergman’s Cinema which celebrated Bergman’s one hundredth birthday.

dreams kvinnodrom harriet andersson gunnar bjornstrand

I could take you for everything if I wanted

Bergman was pretty prolific as a director/writer.  He did a lot of work over the course of his career.  Often his “stories” feel more like slices of life and aren’t necessarily the most plot driven stories.  Dreams is one of those films and even though it isn’t liked much, it still is better than many films out there.

The story is told in two parallel “mini-films”.  You have Doris’s day which involves meeting a beaten man whose wife is insane and his daughter is cruel to him.  Doris (who resembles his wife) is brought in by his kindness and the dreams of what a life would be with him unlike her boyfriend…and though she is open with him, she ends up getting burned.  The second part of the story is Susanne’s day where she reconnects with the man she’s had an affair with.  She declares her love for him and seems to get it reciprocated.  She soon learns that the man’s wife knows about the affair and knows that she’s “won” in the contest.  It is an interesting confrontation and both men are shown to be rather weak and both Doris and Susanne are the ones who suffer.

dreams kvinnodrom eva dahlbeck inga landgre ulf palme


The acting is strong as with most Bergman’s films.  Eva Dahlbeck has the meatier role as the more bitter of the two women and Harriet Andersson’s interactions with Gunnar Björnstrand shows her character is more aware than she maybe presents herself.  I particularly like Inga Landgré as the wife of Henrik who sees right through her husband and Susanne.

The movie is a bit more visually bland than some of Bergman’s films.  Despite this clear transfers of the film present a movie that looks rather ageless.  The quality of Bergman’s films (and how well they were maintained) says something about the director himself.

Dreams might not be a Bergman classic, but Bergman always has a way with his movies and can make even the average film better.  The film (like many of Bergman’s movies) is more of a character study which results in a story instead of a story that results in a character study.  Bergman followed Dreams with Smiles of a Summer Night (also released in 1955).

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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