The Seventh Seal : Boring

Boring

This film had a few interesting points but it seemed to squander what little bit of mystique that I thought it may have had. At the risk of sounding abrasive...... this film was very boring and dry.

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Re: Boring


Some nice photography; but it makes 2001 seem like an acid trip. Ad 2001 is great!

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Re: Boring

I don't hate to say I agree with you. I'd rather cut my wrists than watch this film again...

http://ben-04.dvdaf.com/owned

Re: Boring

i think i disagree with you
it kind of movie that get better with each time you see it

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The scenes without Death didn't hold my interest at all.

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Re: Boring

There are a handfull of movies out there (some of which I *do* like) that if a review would ever say "this isn't that good" they'd never be respected as a reviewer again, even by people who haven't seen it.

Same is true with books.

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Re: Boring

I would absolutely agree. When I review a film, I try to take into account the time period and context it was filmed in. Even with that taken into a account, I still don't see how this is a "masterpiece". I enjoyed Rashomon much more than this film, and it does tend to be slow at some parts. But still a good film. 8/10

Re: Boring


It was just slow and not very innovative by today's standards

Most amusingly ironic statement I've read all week. And you did it by accident! Bless.

Hamlet wasn't very innovative by today's standards - where was all the CGI? It's like Shakespeare blew his Special FX buget on catering or something.

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Re: Boring

First of all: I agree on the cinematography-part. There are tons of 'old' movies which held my attention without awesome graphics. Hell...Dr. Strangelove and nearly everything Hitchcock made me actually hold my breath several times. Not because of the action, but because of the sense of impending doom. The Seventh Seal however, did not excite me this much.

But my main reason for not liking The Seventh Seal has to do with the 'philosophical' questions. Thinking about life and death is one of the first things a human being does once he begins to understand his mortality. The questions posed in the film are not exactly groundbreaking, now are they?

And even that, the 'level' of the issues, was not my main problem; If you make a movie regarding these heavy subjects, also offer some views of your own. I'm not looking for definitive answers, just the opinion of the filmmaker. I didn't find anything like that in the Seventh Seal. Just 'unanswered' question after question after question.
After reading the current synopsis by HarveyDanger I see all the underlying 'themes', but the only actual 'views' regarding these themes I remember, were the views of Jöns about women. Also not really groundbreaking (and ofcourse totally ridiculous), but at least good for a laugh.



Gah, English is not my first language and I've got a feeling that I'll be completely misunderstood, but oh well...



If you honestly want to know what I mean regarding the 'presentation of views and opinions', check out the movie 'Waking Life'. Hell...even several youtube searches on that movie will get my point across I guess.
I realise it is more like a documentary than a story and my high opinion about this movie may or may not be influenced by the fact that I saw it just yesterday...

Re: Boring

"Waking Life" was a lot of fun, both due to the roto-scoping technique as well as our tour through various philosophical presentations on the "meaning of it all." I particularly like the scene with the four wannabe discordianists who realize that they're all talk and no action, lol.

My question for you, though, is why you feel that this film and filmmaker, Linklater, satisfied your desire to see his 'views' and not just a variety of presented 'themes'?

There was that one scene towards the end where Linklater is quoting some Philip K. Dick stuff to Wiley Wiggin's character. In a way, that in itself presents irony to your argument in that Philp K. Dick presented many fascinating themes in his novels without ever settling on an answer to any of the questions he presented.

I suppose "The 7th Seal" may not seem as spiritualy challenging to our modern senses because it suggests that the Christian God or no gods are our only two alternatives. All in all I am not one who believes that the spiritually heavy themes in "The 7th Seal" are what make it a great movie. It's Bergman's writing and directing, Fischer's camera, the the great ensemble cast which makes every scene a gem.


"Ryu-san, you don't quite look your character's age."

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Joemal "slow and not very innovative standards" was not a reference to CG or any type of special effects for that matter. Its a reference to the overall snail's pace this film has and its outdated filming techniques, cinematography, and camera technology. Just looking at it from a pure cinematography standpoint this movie is very primitive."

I agree with you, the cinematography could have been A LOT better, you look at Seven Samurai 1954, made 3 years before this movie and the composition/framing of the shots are amazing, you look at an old classic such as The Cat People and again you think the lighting is fantastic for a film made in 1942. I watch The Seventh Seal and the cinematography is nothing amazing, its a little dull in fact and the framing is something I felt (even during the viewing) could have been of a much higher standard.

Not to say the film isn't good, I'm just speaking purely on the cinematography of the film.

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yeah, and everyone gets killed at the end. He was a hack playwright if there ever was one...

I was misinformed...

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Quite ironic that somone that does not even understand words such as "slow" and "innovative" is moralizing others about their tastes.

---------------------------------------------
Applied Science? All science is applied. Eventually.

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Re: Boring - so what!

Whenever I read statements like your casual dismissal of THE SEVENTH SEAL, I'm left wondering all sorts of things. Certainly, not everyone is going to like a movie, and sometimes it's merely a matter of taste and temperament that defines critical judgement. But writing a note saying the movie is boring and nothing more, or, as others following have said, the movie is dated, and those of us who like the film are merely posing, strikes me odd.

First of all, I don't find the movie boring or dated or pretentious: so there. If asked, I could justify my opinion. In fact, whenever I post a critical message I always explain my position. To merely write, boring, does not really tell me anything. Actually, a dissenting opinion often sparks new thought and new ways of seeing a film. An opinion without some form of justification is merely a judgement, little use to anyone, at all. Basically, reading your statements, I'm left with the opinion that you and others simply don't understand the movie, or, more precisely, movies in general. That you're compelled to express such a judgement, without thought or discussion, seems more to me an act of provocation than anything else. And what, really, is the point of that?

Re: Boring - so what!

Somebody always has to say "boring" on a great and classic film like this. I know its a cliche to say that it is above many people's understanding, but I think that is the case here. Granted , not everyone is going to like a movie, but to the guy who said, "it may have been great once, but not anymore" , that is a ridiculous statement. If a movie is great, it is great always. I am curious as to what modern movie or movies you have compared it to to say something like that, since most modern movies seem dumbed down to appeal to the masses because of the money involved today. If you are referring to the lack of CGI, the that is also ridiculous. CGI is more responsible for uninteresting movies today than anything else. A lot of filmakers use CGI as a crutch at the expense of a good story. And a lot of younger filmgoers do not have the attention span to watch a movie in which something doesn't blow up every minute.

My 2 cents.

Re: Boring - so what!

It is possible for a great movie's subject matter to be revisited so often by later works that the original winds up seeming kind of quaint and tame. Despite the spoofs, THE SEVENTH SEAL is not a movie that has suffered from that fate.

reply to kmorrison1

kmorrison1, you are so right. It seems like there's always someone who must dismiss influential works without actually talking about why. Most opinions like that are not critical, they're more like challenges meant to provoke anger and not thought. Ingmar Bergman made some stinkers, and a few of his films are pretentious, but over all his reputation as a film artist will survive this kind of casual swipe. It has, in fact, survived it before; some of his finest films were met with critical incomprehension when they first came out.

What you say is correct: movies today cost so much to make, even the more challenging projects must in someway be homogenized for box office appeal. Hollywood studios rarely make small budget movies any more. Certain five to fifteen million dollar budgeted genre films will make it through the pipeline, and occasionally one is surprisingly good. But for the most part, Hollywood movies are hundred million plus affairs, and that, in itself, dictates an approach that inevitably undermines what I'd call a "personal vision." Clint Eastwood circumvents the odds with a style of shooting that is artistically and financially economical. Most of his films are made for under a hundred million (some way under); and even if a movie like CHANGELING doesn't take the US box office by storm, it's international box office and DVD sale leads to an appropriate profit. And, of course, every once in a while he comes up with a GRAN TORINO, which is made for very little and makes nearly three hundred million worldwide!

Bergman's work will always transcend the limitations of individual tastes. His influence, like Godard's, Fellini's, Antonioni's, and many others, has been absorbed by the world's mainstream; in terms of visual craft, narrative style, and theme, these film makers all represent respective standards that continue to motivate and challenge new generations of film artists. When someone comes here to dismiss the work as boring, without discussing just what the hell they mean, they show a general lack of understanding and basic insight regarding film and film language; they really don't know what they're talking about.

Re: reply to kmorrison1

Thank you for your posts. You said what I wanted to and more.

It's hard to say the phrase "lack of understanding" without sounding pretentious... but I think for films like this (old, indirect, languidly paced) people just get lazy and dismiss masterpieces as 'boring' because their passive brain isn't use to truly interacting with films. It's straight-up trolling.

But I know what people like this mean, as I sometimes find movies like this boring myself. But it's not the movie that is boring, it's purely the fact that my brain can't be bothered thinking with that level of intensity (at times like these I might change to a Will Ferrel flick). And if I find it boring I simply turn it off and come back to it at a time when my brain feels really ready to think and absorb all I can of these old-time masterpieces.

I laugh when people come into these boards trashing films considered by the majority of professionals in the field to be masterpieces... having the audacity to think that it is the film that's at fault, without first looking at themselves.

Re: Boring - so what!

My sentiments exactly. As if there is a director in cinema today with the kind of fecundity of mind that this man possessed. People say it's dated, but that's not really a criticism, is it? All that means is that it's no longer in fashion to make films like this, and that can only be a bad thing.

Totally agree with your comments about CGI as well, which is a degenerate form of cinematography. As if CGI will ever be able to duplicate the intricacy of reality. People get so bedazzled by the latest computer graphics, they forget how risibly artificial it looks, how neglected every other facet of the filmmaking process is in these films.

Re: Boring - so what!…. reply to nfaust1

I've read your complaint about my lack of detail or reason for not liking the film. I did not intend for my statement to be a provocation of any sort. I'll admit that I probably did not fully understand the film but there is a point in which the viewer has to think.... is this something worth understanding? I'm sure the film has more value than I gave it credit for but in all fainess, I wanted to warn others of this film's lack of ability to pull me in as a viewer. I'm actually a fan of many films with difficult plots and challenging cinematography. Perhaps I need to watch this film again after doing some light research in order to spark my interest.

Kind Regards,
Clay

Happy to get your response, Clay.

This message makes more sense to me. You titled your original one, BORING, which in itself seems like a challenge. Here you say "boring" without the challenge and with some conditional thoughts.

These message board statements make more of an impact all around if those commenting reach beyond judgement to express the thoughts, feeling, and conditions that lead to an opinion, especially if it's a contrary one. If all you say is such and such is boring, then anyone else can reply with: No it's not! And what do any of us get or learn from that?

See, what leads you to initially wonder if THE SEVENTH SEAL is worth understanding would be a fascinating thing for me to read.

In any event, thank-you for this message. Nick

Re: Boring - so what!…. reply to nfaust1

Clay, sometimes no matter how hard one tries, they just might not like a film. I can't watch 'The Searchers' without cringing at how hokey I find the movie. Many people claim it's the best western ever. So be it! Not everybody is going to like everything. If you try it again and find you don't like it, I wouldn't worry about it too much. Such is life!

Re: Boring - so what!

I cannot help but think that your comment is nothing more than what you are actually criticizing. You clearly hold this movie to high regard but you do not describe the reason for it.

I watched the movie, and will be happy to admit that perhaps I did not understand the movie. I am reading the message board in search for the reasoning for this movie's appeal.

Would you care to tell us why you hold this movie in high regard?

Re: Boring - so what!

I can see where you think I'm doing what I criticize. If you look closer, though, the original statement that prompted this response was not just someone's judgement of the film, it was also a judgement of those of us who do not find it "boring." My remarks were focused on that and not meant as a defense of the film itself. For that, let me suggest Roger Ebert's piece in his Great Films series, or look it up on Rotten Tomatoes.

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I wasn't bored at all...I found it quite interesting and thought-provoking.

"Ground Control to Major Tom"

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I agree. Vastly overated. The movie had a few interesting things going on, but it was kind of dry, rough around the edges, and tipped the scales towards melodrama.

I think this movie could have been a little more enjoyable as a Western.

This movie is currently #117 of all time on IMDB. If you didn't enjoy the film, rate this fairly so it can find a more reasonable place.

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I didnt find it boring but its not so hard not to get bored with 90min film.

You should know a little about history how the people thought the world would go down and how the pest killed maybe half of europe.

How can it be boring to watch people wipping themselves because they think they will go to hell if they dont.
I just thaught what a weird religion that really is.

But I do think color might have made this film better.
In some scenes the b&w is a disadvantage.

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It gives us material to think. Raises questions. Has some beautiful scenes and motifs. And/But it's boring.


vote history http://www.imdb.com/mymovies/list?l=42632824

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Virgin Spring and a few others were better IMO, i was expecting this thing to be epic sense it's so renowned amongst the black metallers.....

If you don't believe in Jesus Christ and are 100% proud of it, put this in your sig.

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i have to agree...
only interesting part for me was the scenes with death
the rest of movie bored me to death

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Like your comments, but I always find black and white so much more expressive than colour.

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A more reasonable place in YOUR estimation, certainly not for many people. I think you've completely misconstrued this one. Rough around the edges? Come on now, you're going to have to be a little less vague than that if you want the more discerning reader to credit your argument with any cogency. Tipped the scales towards melodrama? You have the embryo of a criticism, but you've done nothing to develop it, so I can only assume that you are fabricating flaws, in lieu of anything more persuasive to say. Then you go and compound the inanity of your comments by saying it would have been more enjoyable as a western. I find it hard to imagine this film's themes placed within the context of the western genre. Try cultivating some modesty, doing some research on the film itself, your comments seem designed for a totally different film to this one, so obtuse do they seem to this reader. All you have done is confirmed some peoples notions that reviewers who devalue this film do it simply because of their inadequacy in reviewing works of such a complex nature, so desensitised to inconsequential poo are they. I'm not saying this is a great film (certainly is in my opinion, and the opinions of many esteemed cinephiles) nor am I saying that people are under an obligation to like this film, but at least do something to substantiate these assertions, and prove that you are not viewing this film from a position of conceited ignorance.

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Perhaps it is a preferencial thing. I didn't care for Solyaris and sat through that one too. I'm figuring out what genres and film makers are a bunch of noise. This helped me form my tastes towards Ingmar Bergman.

I'm not a movie reviewer. I felt bored and unimpressed throughout so I began to look at how the movie was made.

The dialogue felt unnatural and I didn't feel like I cared about any of the characters. I kept waiting for something to happen: I started looking at the directing technique. Expressions of the actors. How random extras acted when there were a number of people in a scene.

I began to wonder about the religious babble. I wondered if it was symbolic, literal, or just there to fill up space. I began to wonder if real people would speak and react in the situations the same way the actors did. The answer is no.

Maybe you can give me a few pointers on what sets this movie apart and makes it better than average.

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I'm a 24 years old atheist and yet I like both the Tarkovsky's and Bergman's films. I think most people focus too much on the fact that they are religious and intellectual movie-makers. While that is true, people seem to forget or ignore that first and foremost they are great humanists.

You don't have to believe in the entity that is God to be affected by these films. Well, I don't have to. To strip it to the most basic - this movie questions what it is that defines us as humans (or what it is being a human) and what we fear. Death and loneliness, mostly. And when you say that this movie just asks and never gives an answer then I'm just astonished. It requires some thought, yes, but it's nothing that obscure. Do we really need neon-sign and ultraobviousness now? Why isn't thinking something out yourself considered the norm but 'boring'? Look, all the characters were unhappy save for the juggler and their family? Why, because they find solace in the knowing, that there is an another human being with the same fears as their own and they can overcome their self-centered view (that's natural, even instinctial view [sorry if that's not the correct word, not a native english speaker :) ]) through love. So the movie suggests, that maybe through human closeness we can ease the fear of death, even when we never escape it. That life is a worth even in it's unstability. Too simple, maybe even too hokey for some but these are the truths that are worth repeating because worse than repeating those is forgetting those truths.

It's so sad to me when something so humane is considered boring even without trying to understand the sentiment behind it. But it's the well of human evilness, I quess, not understanging the humane but that what pleases yourself.

Re: Boring

Well stated. Thanks for so much insight.

I've gone back and watched a handful of the scenes again. It still doesn't have any affect...or speak to me at all. It just comes across as a low budget play with long-winded dialogue.

I've been near death a few times. Things looked pretty bleak for a while. Even when I got past it I didn't really care whether I lived or died.

That turkey I ate about a half hour ago wasn't ready to go either.

Oh, how the sand slips from the hourglass in this darkest hour!

Re: Boring


this movie questions what it is that defines us as humans (or what it is being a human) and what we fear. Death and loneliness, mostly . . . all the characters were unhappy save for the juggler and their family? Why, because they find solace in the knowing, that there is an another human being with the same fears as their own and they can overcome their self-centered view . . . through love. So the movie suggests, that maybe through human closeness we can ease the fear of death, even when we never escape it. That life is a worth even in it's unstability. Too simple, maybe even too hokey for some but these are the truths that are worth repeating because worse than repeating those is forgetting those truths.
Let's assume that I agree with all of that--I agree that is what the film is about, I agree with it philosophically, and I agree that it's an important thing for a film to be about (I do not actually agree with all of that, but just assume/pretend that I do).

My question is, how would agreeing with any of that make it a good film? Are films good simply because of what they're about? Isn't how a film is about something, in terms of how the script is written, how it's acted, how it's photographed, etc. the important thing? If not, then why wouldn't filmmakers just have someone stand in front of a camera and in a monotone voice say things that you believe are important and that you agree with philosophically? That should be the best film ever in that case.

I could agree with all of that stuff you said and still think that The Seventh Seal stinks as a film. I could think "It's about important stuff that I agree with, but as a film, it sucks, because I didn't care for the story, the script, the performances, the photography, the pacing, etc."

So while I can appreciate that you and many other people love the film, do you really love it just because of what it's about? And if not, what do you love regarding how it's about what it's about? If you like the story or script, what do you like about them? What do you like about the performances? etc.


http://www.rateyourmusic.com/~JrnlofEddieDeezenStudies

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Re: Boring

I don't agree with the OP, personally, but I can see how many folks would think Seventh Seal is boring. It's not like people rush out to buy (gasp) books on existentialism, philosophy, medieval history, etc. The post wasn't a review but a post and was a fair comment imho. I happen to enjoy cerebral, dark, layered, deep films and Seventh Seal is a personal favorite. But, in contrast, I also like modern, big-budget movies and sometimes popcorn flicks that appeal to a wide audience. Yes, intellectual effete friends...things that the lowest common denominator also enjoy...eek. It's all dependent on my mood.

I can see a lot of people getting more than they bargained for when trying this film out, based on reputation, and feeling like they just got a plate full of something they don't like (all fair). It's also not surprising that so many people chimed in with pompous, hypocritical, over-intellectualized quasi-flaming b/c they only like posts that they either agree with or, better yet, something they can attack with a giant text wall of thesaurus-fueled rage. Apparently, a lot of folks miss writing college term papers and teh internetz is an oasis of sorts to channel their frustration. For myself, I'll just happily agree to disagree agreeably and wish you good luck in your search for more interesting movie fare. Really a simple "different strokes" comment is all that's needed here. Move along.

Re: Boring

I have to agree with OP.... PAINFULLY boring. Only the death scenes caught my attention.

BTW was I the only one not OK with the fact that the Jof couldn't juggle those balls if his life depended on it even though he was SUPPOSED to! WTF

Re: Boring

The problem is the Seventh Seal is too famous. People who are new to foreign or classic films usually start with the Seventh Seal, Seven Samurai, Breathless, 8 1/2 and the 400 Blows. You don't see people on more obscure classic foreign film boards saying the movie is boring, because only people who are really into film will watch those. But everyone with even a mild interest in film will watch this one. So you're more likely to have a wider range of reactions, since juvenile and unsophisticated people will watch this movie.
Also, "boring" is never an accurate adjective. You can be bored, perhaps because you don't understand, or have a short attention span or very particular interests...but a film, or anything else, is not in itself "boring." Use more precise words please.

Re: Boring

When I first saw this movie, I thought it was good but definitely not one of Bergman's best. But seeing it a 2nd time (three weeks later), I liked it a lot more. I think CrimeAndPunishment is on the money when he/she said that this movie is too famous. People expect a lot from it and high expectations only bring low results. This movie isn't an epic but a very cerebral comic-drama. Some its images are so iconic (the personification of death as hooded figure for example) that they have been parodied (Family Guy comes to mind) and now they have sadly lost some of their power.

It is an amazing film nonetheless. And I admit I'm a little irritated by people who say "I expected a lot from it but it didn't impress me" because it's hardly the movie/Bergman's fault. Films like The 7th Seal should be watched with an open mind, as if you are seeing them opening day.

"It's hard for me to watch American Idol because I have perfect pitch."
-Jenna, 30 Rock
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