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The Devil's Eye [DVD] [1960] [2007]

4 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Actors: Jarl Kulle, Bibi Andersson, Gunnar Bjornstrand, Stig Jarrell
  • Directors: Ingmar Bergman
  • Format: PAL, Black & White, Dolby, Subtitled, Full Screen
  • Language: Swedish
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 4:3 - 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: 15
  • Studio: Tartan Video
  • DVD Release Date: 11 Jun. 2007
  • Run Time: 90 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000OY9WJM
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 56,442 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)


After finishing The Virgin Spring in 1960 Ingmar Bergman found himself drained and according to a friend needed to tell a joke . The resulting film was The Devil's Eye starring Bibi Andersson, who would later go on to star in both Wild Strawberries and Persona. When the Devil decides that a young woman has been a virgin for too long he sends Don Juan up from hell to rob her of her virginity. Despite his charms the young woman resists the temptation to give in to him, but events become further complicated when Don Juan falls for her, experiencing love for the first time. Previously unavailable on DVD, The Devil's Eye is one of Bergman s most abstract films and represents his first attempt to grapple with the question of theatricality in film. Special Features: -Bergman Trailers -Film Notes

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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By degrant on 20 Nov. 2000
Format: VHS Tape
Bergman only undertook to make The Devil's Eye as a sweetener to making A Virgin Spring. The commercial rationale was that a self-styled "Rondo Capriccioso" would provide the money spinning insurance against the perceived commercial suicide of a medieval murder story. Bergman cared little for The Devil's Eye and was vindicated by the fact that the commercial suicide proved by far the more successful of the two.
The progeny of this contractual obligation does not augur well. The creation of an overt comedy introduced by a narrator may seem to be as unfaithful to Bergman's natural calling as his biggest fan Woody Allen's turn to tragedy was.
In fact, The Devil's Eye is a success. Even at his most apocalytic or soul-searching, Bergman exercised a comic touch, albeit sometimes stygian. Here, he summons up a vision of the underworld with a welcome felicity and assuredness.
Drawing on an Irish proverb of doubtful authenticity (A girl's virginity is a stye in the eye of the Devil) the film concerns the Devil's attempt to poison innocence to cure his stye. In the pursuit of this task, the Devil transports his most potent seducer, Don Juan, from hell to deflower a young girl whose apparent innocence masks a knowing sexuality.
The film is, to a large part, an investigation of desire and man's reaction to it, how he sumbits to it, is overwhelmed by it, even horrified by it. Unlike in other films, Bergman does not locate this in a Lutheran revolt of pleasure but in a battle of the sexes. Primed as how best to conquer Swedish women, Don Juan and his assistant Pablo seek to seduce a vicar's daughter and wife respectively.
The vicar's world-weary wife is contemptuous of her foolish husband and, as she reveals, herself.
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By Tim Kidner TOP 500 REVIEWER on 27 Aug. 2012
Format: DVD
For a long time unavailable on DVD, this 2007 Tartan release finally addresses that, but is it worth it?

Like most, I love classic Bergman and find anything else by him interesting, at the very least. Coming just after the heavy and emotionally draining making of his The Virgin Spring, in 1960, the DVD blurb tells us that the director needed to 'tell a joke' - this resulting oddity revealing a waspish comedic streak from someone known as a deep, complex and often depressive writer and director.

It launched Bibbi Anderson, who would become Bergman's famous face in his massive hits Persona and Wild Strawberries. In The Devil's Eye, she plays the virgin Britt-Marie, daughter of a cleric. At age 20, the Devil has decided she's ripe for de-flowering, but she's promised to a boring but reliable older man. Taking the form of Don Juan, the infamous lethario of legend, the devil attempts to seduce her. Who will win? Heaven, or Hell, or indeed, both?

From the very outset, with its odd introduction and even odder harpsichord note, this one is set to be a comedy. It's very theatrical; caricatures and grotesques mix with the ordinary, mirrors and imaginative sets convey hell. Period detail rubs shoulders with 20th century Scandinavian domesticity. One can see many possible influences, all moulded in a vast cooking pot and quite a strange mixture is the result.

I'm sure one could look into it all a lot deeper than I did - one of the greatest things about Bergman is that most of his films can be watched at a differing angle and a whole new aspect is highlighted, helped enormously by his intelligent and often poetic dialogue.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
this was really funny. don juan and his sidekick are sent from hell by the devil to seduce a woman the devil thinks has been a virgin for too long and has given him a stye in his right eye as a result. hence, the devil's eye is afflicted, and only don juan can cure it. or can he?

there is no overt sexual content in this film unlike many of bergman's movies, so a pg rating is good enough.
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Very cleverly conceived and (as always with Bergman's films) impeccably acted.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 11 reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
The game of the opportunities! 30 Jan. 2007
By Hiram Gomez Pardo - Published on
This delightful, witty and mordacious comedy still remains among the most important tributes ever paid by any filmmaker to theater in the great tradition of Beaumarchais, Zorilla or the great adaptations a la Mozart' s Cossi fan tutte or Don Giovanni.

All begins when the astonishing woman's chastity gives the Devil a sty in his eye and his sweet and discrete revenge will be to send from Hell to Earth the legendary Don Juan. As you may expect, the smart dialogues, the insidious double sense proposals and the finest humor will be present all the way through until the last line of the play.

So, the plot combines gaiety through its inventiveness, suspicious and all the clever means Don Juan possesses in order to crown himself ; but he will not be alone; his loyal servant Pablo will join him and both of them will have the risky goal to seduce the wife and daughter of a good pastor. As you may suppose here you have a delirious, intelligent and irreverent comedy that will make you smile with fine irony.

One of the most celebrated comedies of this extraordinary director.
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
This is a delightful dry comedy from an unexpected source. 16 Jan. 1999
By A Customer - Published on
Ingmar Bergman is not known for comic film. Some have argued that The Devil's Eye demonstrates his frailty in comic direction, but I found it a sharply told wry little story. The film is told with elegant style and imagination, using minimal sets and actual locations to convey the difference between the world of the Devil and the world in which we live. I found the performances of the cast to be charming, particularly those gentleman portraying Don Juan and the pastor. This comedy is subtle, most often underplayed.
Bergman in a playful mood 5 Oct. 2006
By Bomojaz - Published on
The devil is in agony with a sty in his eye - all caused by the fact that a 20-year-old virgin (played by Bibi Andersson) still walks the earth. To rectify this "problem" who better to seduce her than Don Juan? So on this "mission of mercy" come the Don (Jorle Kulle) and his lecherous sidekick Pablo (Sture Lagerwall) - and the fun begins. Pablo falls for Andersson's mother and wastes no time seducing her, and Don Juan gets down to "work" quickly too. But complications, of course, arise, and before he knows it, Don Juan is in love with Andersson and Pablo's finagling has only brought the mother closer to her husband. So the mission is a failure - until a little surprise occurs on Andersson's wedding night, allowing for a tiny victory for the devil and relief from the sty. Delightful is not a word that would readily come to mind in describing Bergman movies, but this one is exactly that. The movie is very stagey with an actor introducing each "act" script in hand. But the movie is playful and a lot of fun.
By Daniel S. - Published on
*** 1960. THE DEVIL'S EYE, based on a play written by Oluf Bang, was written and directed by Ingmar Bergman. The Devil is affected with a sty in the eye because an 18 years old girl doesn't want to have sex before her wedding. Don Juan is sent to earth in order to seduce the young girl. This comedy is a minor effort of the Swedish master but could please the completist who sleeps in you. After the Death in The Seventh Seal - Criterion Collection, the Devil is the second religious figure appearing in a Bergman movie.

You can find zone 2 DVD's of THE DEVIL'S EYE at or
A Charming Comedy 14 Mar. 2011
By Henry H. Knapp - Published on
Format: VHS Tape Verified Purchase
The devil gets a painful sty in his eye because a beautiful young virgin is about to be married without first having been deflowered. The rest is comedy.

This film shows Bergman at his playful best. The dialog is clever, the plot is simple but amusing, and the direction and acting are suave and sophisticated. One is charmed, exactly as Bergman must have intended. Highly recommended.
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