Quite nerve-wracking poem about modern war and its effects on average citizens. Taking place in an alternate universe (or does it?) where nothing quite makes sense and scenes connect with the logic of a dream. . .or in this case a nightmare. Anyway, there are some really gripping images, but also the same old scenes of Swedes weeping and droning on and on about their inability to love. I’d like to see one Bergman film that leaves that on the cutting room floor. What’s best is the implication that to survive war one has to be a prick. This is the central theme of Sophie’s Choice and what ultimately leads her to what she considers the strong and righteous decision: suicide. In Shame, in order to keep his family alive, Max von Sydow must become a murderer, even killing at random for information and a new pair of boots. Is he a villan or a hero? He’s a survivor, and we’ve all been taught that survivors are ipso facto good people — but maybe the more rightous thing to do is to roll over and die as Liv Ullman wants to. Lastly, has Max von Sydow ever not been old??