The spirit of Carné's Quai des Brumes presides over this rather obvious dockside melodrama, adapted from Martin Söderhjelm's play. Tugboat captain Löwenadler dominates the proceedings as the volatile paterfamilias who's alienated his long-suffering wife (Lindahl) and son (Malmsten), but whose abrasive exterior also masks his thwarted dreams of escape. The news that he's going blind sharpens tensions, as his illicit relationship with chorus girl Fridh comes into the open, though Malmsten might better satisfy her hopes for the future. The collision of claustrophobia and yearning in both domestic and geographical terms is vivid enough, though at this stage the emotive and thematic weight of Bergman's ambitions prove a bit too much for his decidedly functional plotting and characterisation. The captain's secret room, filled with model boats and exotic knick-knacks, shows an isolated spark of inspiration in its visual rendering of psychological ferment.
Cast and crew