"I've never sought success in order to get fame and money; it's the talent and the passion that count in success."
August 29, 1915- August 29, 1982
Yes, I know that Ingrid Bergman’s birthday was yesterday but as a huge fan of hers I cannot let her birthday go uncelebrated here at Une Cinéphile.
I am not going to go into a big ordeal about her life because she is one of the most celebrated and well known classic actresses. Everyone knows (or should know) that she was Swedish, she came to the United State to make films after David O. Selznick saw her in the Swedish version of Intermezzo: A Love Story and cast her in the American film version, Bergman made many pictures including the incredible Casablanca and Notorious with Alfred Hitchcock, in the 1950s she had an affair with Roberto Rossellini while she was still married to her Swedish husband and was denounced on the floor of the American Senate, and once she made her comeback in Anastasia all was forgiven and she became a Hollywood icon.
I cannot remember when I first became a fan of Ingrid Bergman’s all I remember was picking up Hitchcock’s Notorious on DVD because Cary Grant was in it and she just so happened to be the leading lady. After that I found Casablanca on DVD. I liked Bergman I thought she was a good actress but it was not until I read Charlotte Chandler’s Ingrid: A Personal Biography that I became a great admirer of hers. I cannot even tell you why I bought Chandler’s biography but I did and from the moment I started reading it I immediately liked Bergman and saw that she was not just some classic actress she was a classic actress who was one of the best there ever was.
What I greatly admire about Bergman is that she was an actress who loved what she did; she enjoyed acting that was who she was. You can clearly see how much she loved to act not just by the volume of her works but by her acting. Never have a seen a film of hers that she is not amazing. I loved reading in Chandler’s book the story of when Bergman was just starting out in Sweden she was in a film where her face had to be disfigured (I do not believe it was A Woman’s face this was just when she was an extra). Bergman said that she kept her makeup on and I believe a mouth piece in as she walked home. She did it as sort of an experiment to see how people looked at others who were disfigured. Who would ever want to do that? To me that is dedication. I feel that by watching Bergman’s films you can see her dedication to her craft. She played so many different types of characters and was just fabulous.
My favorite Ingrid Bergman film is Casablanca. Casablanca is just my all time favorite film. Bergman was so good as Ilsa Lund. She pretty much plays all different ranges of emotions from longing, lusting, deceiving, to caring and kindness in one film. Bergman just pulled the character off to perfection, I can never see anyone else playing Ilsa better than she did. In Notorious she is brilliant. I think she had her perfect acting match in Cary Grant and it is a shame they did not work together in more films (they were in Indiscreet in 1958). Bergman could be paired with any actor and create an insane amount of on screen chemistry with them. Spellbound and Gaslight are also two of her best films. With Gaslight Bergman won the Academy Award for Best Actress and deserved it. But one of my favorite roles she played was Greta in Murder on the Orient Express and again she won an Academy Award and again deserved it she was had the best part of the whole film and was funny.
I can seriously just go on and on about how amazing Ingrid Bergman was. I can say that had I not become of fan of Bergman’s when I did (and I also became a Hitchcock fan around the same time) I would not be as big a classic film buff as I am at this moment. I do not what more I can say about Bergman as an actress other than Hollywood will never see another actress that was as dedicated and as talented as her again. Ingrid Bergman is the ideal actress that everyone aspiring actress to look up.
“I have no regrets. I wouldn't have lived my life the way I did if I was going to worry about what people were going to say.”