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Fresh Off NYFF, ‘Bergman Island' Leads Festival Pack Into Cinemas

One of the fall's most anticipated films selected for this year's New York Film Festival is now in theaters

Vicky Krieps as Chris and Tim Roth as Tony in Mia Hansen-Love's BERGMAN ISLAND.
IFC Films

A captivating new film from Mia Hansen-Løve, director of "Eden" and "Things to Come," opens in theaters this weekend.

Her new feature, "Bergman Island," opened the New York Film Festival last month to nearly universal acclaim from film critics and audiences in attendance at Lincoln Center.

Hansen-Løve's latest, distributed by IFC Films, follows a filmmaking couple on a summer writing retreat on the island of Fårö. Chris (Vicky Krieps) and Tony (Tim Roth) look to the island's namesake, Ingmar Bergman, for inspiration in their own film projects.

Tony, the more established of the two artists who attends a panel of his work during the retreat, and Chris find different paths to connect to the work of Bergman on the island where he once lived and made movies.

As Chris unlocks the inspiration for her next piece of writing, the lines of reality and fiction blur when her new story comes into focus. The film suddenly introduces the characters in Chris's story: Amy (Mia Wasikowska) and her first love Joseph (Anders Danielsen Lie) who unexpectedly reunite while attending a wedding on the island.

Mia Wasikowska as Amy in "Bergman Island."
Mia Wasikowska as Amy in "Bergman Island." Courtesy of IFC Films

The film's winding narrative structure came together in what the director described as one of the easiest writing experiences, herself finding inspiration on Fårö.

"My quest as I was writing was I was trying to really capture what inspiration is for me, how it works or doesn't work," Hansen-Løve said during a Q&A at the NYFF.

"What I'm doing as a writer, mixing my fiction with reality to a point that it brings a certain vertigo. Sometimes I don't even know where I am or who I am, sometimes I feel like I am more the person of my films than the person I am in my everyday life."

Acclaim for the film sparked quickly after its world premiere at the Cannes Film Festival over the summer and before screening at Telluride and Toronto. Hansen-Løve and stars Krieps and Danielsen Lie stopped in at Lincoln Center for the film's last festival stop before opening in screens around the country.

"Bergman Island," released Oct. 15, joins festival favorites "Titane," "Wheel of Fortune and Fantasy," "The Velvet Underground," and "What Do We See When We Look at the Sky?" opening in the fall.

The rest of the fall line-up comes to streaming services and theaters in the next several months, while a handful still look for release dates and distributors.

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