Salient. Victoria University of Wellington Student's Newspaper. Volume 31, Number 1. March 3 1968
Large chunks, often whole scenes, of Loving Couples appear to have been excised, so I'm probably being grossly unfair in condemning the film as a whole. The missing bits were undoubtedly cut by the Australian censor, since the print we have seen came via that unfortunate country. The occasional lesbian or heterosexual seduction ("with panting soundtrack", writes one British critic) would probably have kept me in a state of expectation.
As it is. the film comes to life only in the exchanges between Gunnel Lindblom and her husband, and in the scenes with Eva Dahlbeck (beautifully regal) and her gay young man.
I must say, though, that Mai Zetterling scores over Bergman by having odd little bits of technique that are quite exciting. The extended tracking shots are effective, most notably in one stunning image where one of the characters walks across the snow and is followed at an angle by the camera.
All incidental virtues aside, what finally sets me against Loving Couples is the fact that it is nothing like as stimulating as any good film ought to be. When Sweden can produce films as exciting and moving as some made in other countries, 1 will be the first to cheer. Meanwhile, on with Night Games, To Love, My Sister My Love, Galia. Seventeen, and all the breast of them.
It should be pointed out to newcomers to Wellington that the theatres providing, on a monthly average, the best film fare in the city are The Roxy and The Princess, both owned and managed by Harry Griffith. Films seen recently at these theatres have included Martin Ritt's Hud, Kubrick's Killer's Kiss and The Killing, Kazan's On The Waterfront, the magnificent gothic piece The Night Of The Hunter (directed by Charles Laughton). Heroe's Island, and Corman's The St. Valentine's Day Massacre.
It should also be emphasized that Mr Griffith is always open to suggestions. In fact, some of the films mentioned above were recommended by us. One interesting new release is appearing at The Princess shortly: This Property Is Condemned, directed by Sidney Pollack, colour photography by the great lames Wong Howe, starring Natalie Wood and Robert Redford. And for those like me who having been biting their nails, Seconds will be screened at The Lido next month. The best new release so far this year, and the best for some considerable time, has been Bonnie And Clyde. A review of this film will appear next issue, provided that by then my bombed, blasted, and scattered faculties have been sufficiently restored to do justice to a masterpiece of the screen.