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Peter von Bagh on Ingmar Bergman’s “Sånt händer inte här”

The film functions largely like a silent movie. Since there is no common language and since so much of the silent communication is illusory anyway, a tormented, uncanny and alienated Bergmanian community appears once again, merging with a synthetic geography, its non-citizens doomed to an incurable loneliness as they do in ThirstSilence (1962) and Shame (1968). Life is absurd, a quest for something better is meaningless, and although the ‘main couple’ get one another, the severe mood never eases up. The couple consists of a policeman and Signe Hasso, who has killed her husband the night before. The promise of a harmonious, ideal home (Folkhemmet) for them can already be glimpsed, but the soul is black.