Greta Garbo

Monday, March 20, 2023

Swedish Silent Film, director John W. Brunius


     In the United States, Photoplay magazine during 1919 included two still photographs, one of Mary Johnson and one of Gosta Ekman in Puss in Boots. The former was captioned," above is Miss Johnson and Carlo Kell-Moller in an exterior study. miss Johnson is an ingenue leading woman of a type that we make favorites of in america. location work in sweden hasn't become a bore, evidently, as both town and country people impressed by the novelty of the thing are heartily inclined to make the companies their guests instead of momentary and suspected tenants." it also happened to recapitulate its belief that the import of swedish films had previously been prohibited based on the premise that germany had been scrapping the films in order to produce high explosives before the armistice. The director of Puss and Boots ("Masterkattan I stovlar") John Brunius, the silent film director married to swedish film director Pauline Bruinius, is described by Forsyth Hardy in the volume Scandinavian Film as having been "the most considerable figure often linked with the major directors", his having gained renown for a series of historical dramas begun only a few years later. John Brunius had co-scripted his directorial debut "Puss and Boots" with writer Sam Ask. The film was also the first film in which actress Anna Carlsten was to appear. Author Tytti Solla notes that both John Brunius and Rune Carlsten had been trained as actors. Nils Bouveng, the manager of Skandia, had previously been the manager of Hasselblad studios where Rune Carlsten had also been under the producer's supervision.
During July of 1918, in the United States, Motion Picture World announced the formation of the new company of Filmaktiebolget Skandia, which would include the merging of Skandia Film. “The company expects to have under contract popular Scandinavian actors. The studio will be that of the Hasselblad company at Sodra Linden (Goteburg). The present structure will be enlarged and modernized so that there may be productions on a large scale. The new company will start producing in May.”
While with Filmindustri Skandia, John Brunius directed the film "Oh Tommorow Night" ("Ah I Morron Kvall"), which he co-scripted with writer Sam Ask. Photographed by Hugo Edlund, the film stars actresses Eva Eriksson, Mary Graber, Hulda Malmstrom and Gucken Cederborg.
John Brunius during 1919 directed “The Girl from Solbakken/The Fairy from Solbaken” (”Synnove Solbakken”), based on the novel written by Bjornstjerne in 1857. The assistant director to the film was Einar Brunn, it having been filmed in both Sweden and Norway by photographers Hugo Edlund and Arthur Thorell. Starring Lars Hanson and Karin Molander, it was the first film in which actresses Ellen Dall, Ingrid Sundall and Solvieg Hedengran would appear. The film reunited Sam Ask with John Bruinius, they both having co-written the script, as with the film Masterkattan I Stovlar. Tytti Soila, in regard to the film’s editing writes, “The film’s conflict of ideas is condensed in a sequence when there’s cross-cutting between a religious revival meeting at Synnove’s home and young people celebrating Midsummer by dancing in a meadow.” This seems to be the same sequence that Bo Florin credits Brunius with cutting across the 180 degree line. Scholar Bo Florin, in an article entitled “Norwegian Tableaux: A Norway Lass” writes that “The plot of the film faithfully follows Bjornson’s story.” Florin goes further to look at the adaptation of the visual narrative of the novel, alighting upon observations by both Leif Furhammar and Rune Waldecranz that Bruinius replicates tableau like compositions by the painter Tidemand, showing bruinius’s acurracy in reproduction and adds that he also uses the painting Swedish painter Killian Zoll. This was at a time when Skandia specifically was in competition with Svenska Bio over Nordic Literature on the screen.
     Actor Einar Hanson is listed among the cast of the 1919 film People of Hemso (Hemsoborna) directed by Carl Barclind for Scandia. The film was adapted from the work of August Strindberg by Sam Ask and photographed by Hugo Edlund. Hilma Barklind and Mathilda Casper appear in the film.
Filmindustri Inc. Skandia had begun in 1918; two years later Skandia merged with Svenska Bio to form a partnership between Charles Magnusson and Nils Bourevy to run Svensk Filmindustri. In the United States, Photoplay magazine recorded, "The Skandia Film Corporation has just finished the construction of a great glass studio, modeled after and lighted by American methods, near Langangen, north of Stockholm." Jon Wengstrom, in Sweden during this century, has noted that John Brunius not only continued to direct with Svensk Filmindustri after the merger, but produced "period pieces" for his own company.
     Actor Lars Hanson appeared on screen for Scandia Film under the direction of Rune Carlsten in the film A Dangerous Proposal (Etta fanlight firer, 1919), starring with Gun Cronvall, Hilda Categren and actress Uno Henning in what was to be her first on screen appearance.
Photoplay, during 1919, noted, "The Skandia Film Corporation, the employer of these young stars is doing some really big plays on the screen. Among them are several pieces of Bjornsterne Bjornson and a modern drama of social conditions by Danish playwright Pontoppidan. The title of this is The Bomb." Bomben (1920) was directed by Rune Carlsten, written by Sam Ask and photographed by Rauol Reynolds. The film starred Karin Molander and Gosta Ekman. Rune Carlsten would call upon scriptwriter Sam Ask and photographer Raoul Reynolds again during 1920 when directing Snows of Destiny (Familjens Traditioner), based on a play by Einar Froberg and starring Gosta Ekman Tora Teje and Mary Johnson.
     During 1920, the Swedish director John Brunius wrote and directed two notable films, the first of which, Thora van Deken, starred Gosta Ekman, Ellen Dall and Edvin Adolphson, which Pauline Brunius in the title role. The film was an adaptation of a novel written by Henrik K. Pontoppidan. The second, Gycrksviscarna, photographed by Hugo Edlind, starred Pauline Brunius with Nils Asther and Ragnar Arvedson. Both films were produced by Filmindustri Scandia Stockholm.
Give Me My Son (En villages), directed by John Brunius during 1921 in which he himself starred with Pauline Brunius, Tore Svennberg, Edvin Adolphson, Mona Geiffer Falkner and Jenny Tschernichin-Larsson, was revised in the United States shortly after its release by The Film Daily during early 1922. It summarized the film by claiming it was, "a new angle on the mother love theme presented in foreign dramatic offering..Handles dramatic moments effectively, but otherwise average...Pauline Bruinius plays mother role with considerable feeling, suitable cast." before it provided nearly a half page of synopsis, the periodical reported that the film, "gets away from the conventional happy ending. It is not tragic, but unexpected, and not what you think it will be. The denouement is particularly handled, aPnd there are no humorous incidents whatever, so the atmosphere becomes 'heavy' occaisionally.,,the more dramatic moments Re quite effectively handled in a manner that increases the interest to a proper pitch. It is accumulating." Screenwriter Sam Ask appears on screen in the film The Wild Bird (En Vindfagel), which was an adaptation of a play written by S.A. Duse.
Directed for Filmindustri Scandia, Stockholm during 1920, the first three films directed by Pauline Brunius, “De lackra skaldjuren”, “Ombytta Roller” and “Trollslanden” were also to be the first three films in which Frida Winnerstrand was to appear. All three films were photographed by Carl Gustaf Florin. All three films were co-scripted by Pauline Brunius and Lars Tessing.

The Mill (Kvarnen), directed by John Brunius during 1921 had starred Helene Olsson, Klara Kjellblad and Ellen Dall, it having been photographed by Hugo Edlund. The screenwriter Sam Ask also appears in the film, which was an adaptation of a novel penned by Karl Gjellerup. Author Tommy Gustafsson imparts the thematic structure to the film in Swedish Film during a chapter titled Travellers as a Threat in Swedish film during the 1920's. "Kvarnen's rendering of good and evil takes place on two levels. First with an overt symbolism, the filmmakers let a black cat name Pilatus follow Lise wherever she goes, while Amraenta, on the other hand is followed by a tame roe deer. Second, the dark haired Lise is portrayed as a sexually alluring woman with earrings and unbuttoned blouses where we are even able to get a glimpse of seductively bare shoulders and even cleavage. The blond Amrante on the other hand is portrayed as a fairy tale like and innocent character throughout the film." Author Peter Cowie, in his volume Scandinavian Film, writes, " 'The Mill' proved a greater critical success in France than it did in Sweden."

     Pauline Brunius during 1921 wrote and directed the films Lev Livet lee de and Ryggskott, both films of shorter legnth, running under a half hour and both starring Frida Winnerstrand, the photographer for both films having been Carl Gustav.

     The author of Greta Garbo: A Divine Star, David Bret, claims that two films directed by John Brunius that are lost, there being no surviving print of either film, both were films in which Greta Garbo under the name of Greta Gustaffson, had appeared as an extra, whereas, previously, the present author would have only thought to credit her as being in the first film, Soldier of Fortune (En lyckoriddare, 1921), in which she appeared on the set with her sister, Alva. Interestingly enough, Robert Payne, author of The Great Garbo is also among the modern biographers that attribute an uncredited contribution on the part of Greta Garbo to the film, his having noted that she can be seen in the film for well over a full minute.
     Author Jan Olsson recently noted that when Skandia had merged with Swedish Biograph during 1919, one business consideration had been increasing its international market, which would stand to reason as the Danish film industry which had exported was then at a standstill. Olsson advances that it was with an interest in exporting film too foreign markets that the film Karleckens Ogen (Eyes of Love, A Scarlet Angel), directed by Brunius in 1922, had been given a script with a story that transpired in Russia, "Brunius's film featured luxurious cosmopolitan nightclub settings and an intrigue brimming with crimes and passions leading up to redemption of sorts." Brunius co-wrote the film with Sam Ask and it started Pauline Brunius, Karen Winther and Jenny Tschernichin-Larsson. The cinematographer to the film was Hugo Edlund. David Bret, author of Greta Garbo: Divine Star, lists Greta Garbo as having appeared in the film Scarlet Angel as an extra and that the film itself is lost, there being no surviving prints of the work. Writing about the global distribution of Swedish silent film, Sweden as transnational, or reluctantly transnational cinema, scholar Laura Horak chronicles the efforts of producer Nils Bouveng, "While some Swedes blamed international audiences for their lack of sophistication, SF was determined to win these audiences over. The company responded to these reports by making a spate of urban, cosmopolitan films, including 'Erotikon', 'The Eyes of Love' ('Karlekens Ogen' ('The Eyes of Love', John Brunius, 1922) and 'Karusellan' ('The Carousel', Dimitri Buchowetski, 1923)." In light of The exterior silent scene of the the Golden Age of Swedish Film quickly having transferred to the interior dialogue scene of Gustaf Molander after the advent of sound, Horak endearingly adds that during that period, before traveling to the United States, silent director Victor Sjostrom starred well known British actors to make his audiences more international.
     Forsyth Hardy evaluated the directing of John Brunius in his volume Scandinavian Film, "Inside the studio, Brunius was less successful, but his broadly handled spectacles made a contribution to the Swedish cinema which was noted with respect abroad." 
     Actress Mary Johnson, who had previously acted under the direction of George af Klerker and Mauritz Stiller, returned to the screen to act under the direction of John Brunius in 1923 for the film "Johan Ulfstjerna", photographed by Hugo Edlund, in which she starred with Einar Hanson, Anna Olin and Berta Hilbert. The film included scenes shot on location in Finland. The screenplay had been adapted by Carlo Keil-Moller from a play by Tor Hedberg. To lend a sense of the film as a vehicle for the actress author Forsyth Hardy has written, "Brunius could work effectively on a large canvass." Peter Cowie echoes this by noting that director John Brunius used six cameras to film crowd scenes in Helsinki. John Wengstrom, of the Swedish Film Institute, found that the sentiment was echoed by Gosta Werner, whom he quotes as having claimed the film by John Bruinius, “When first theatrically released, was one of his earliest and strongest cinematic experiences”. John W. Bruinius also directed the film "Best of All" in 1923.
     John Brunius during 1924 brought the film Maid Among Maids (En piga bland Piga) to Swedish film audiences. Photographed by cinematographer Hugo Edlund it starred Margit Manstad, Magda Holm, Esther Halling and Halling Lennartsson. During 1924 John Brunius was on stage as an actor at the Svenska Teatern under the direction of Pauline Brunius in a production of “Charites Portratt”, written by Einar Christiansen. John Brunius has begun acting on stage at the Svenska Teatern in 1907 in a production of “Johannes” written by Hemann Suderman. He continued under the direction of Karl Hedberg and Victor Castlegren untill 1910 and under the direction of Gunnar Klintberg untill 1917. Included in his performances were plays written by August Strindberg and Hjalmer Bergman.
     John Brunius in 1925 directed the film Charles XII (Karl II) starring Mona Martenson and Pauline Bruinius. Photographed by Hugo Edlund, it's screenplay was written by Hjalmar Bergman and Ivar Johansson. Many of the scenes of Bruinius's film were shot on the actual historical locations and battle sites. It is in fact listed as having been produced by Historik Film. As is reflected in the list of actor and actresses in the credits of the film, it was one of the most expensive films to have been made in Sweden up until that time. It was a year during which screenwriter Hjalmar Bergman was still corresponding with Victor Sjostrom and during which he had written to Mauritz Stiller, to whom he mentions Sjostrom, Sjostrom's wife, Edith Erastoff and the actress Greta Garbo, or "Garbo" rather. During that year's correspondence he only briefly mentions Mona Martenson, but does in fact more than twice. Although he attributes Hjalmar Bergman with an "imaginatively written screenplay", A. Kwaikauski, author of Swedish Film Classics gives an estimation of the content, and the thematic narrative, or thematic distribution perhaps, of the film, "Brunius did not overcome the danger of excessive trappings. The spectacular and vigorous battle scenes are not matched by the intimate sequences, which are conventional scenes of court intrigue. The film is impressive in size, but essentially illustrative and lifeless."

John Brunius again collaborated with screenwriter Ivar Johansson during 1926 to bring the film Tales of Ensign Stal (Fredrick stalls Sanger) to the screen. Hugo Edlund was the cameraman to the film. Appearing in the film Gosta Ekman, Edvin Adolphson, Pauline Brunius Elsa Lundqvist and Karin Swanstron.

Brunius directed the film Gusta Wasa from a screenplay by Ivar Johansson in 1928.

Although these last two films, "Tales of Ensign Stals" and "Gusta Wasa" were "mammoth costume dramas", author Peter Cowie notes that John Brunius left no mark on the films of the 1930's as a decade as a director, the scepter having been passed to Gustav Molander as the Golden Age of Swedish Silent Film had already reached an anti-climactic close.

After the advent of sound, John Brunius sought to continue the tradition of Swedish filmmaking by turning to the writing of Norwegian novelist Bjornstjerne Bjornson and an adaptation of the 1860 work "En Gald Gut", photographed in Norway for National Film by Gunnar Nilsen-Vig. The film featured actors Hauk Aabel, Goril Havervold and Tore Foss.
John Brunius directed two films during 1930, “The Doctor’s Secret” (“Doktorns Hemlighet”), written by Per Stille and starring Pauline Bruinius, Anne-Marie Bruinius and Marta Ekstrom, and “The Two of Us” (“Vi Tva”), in which Ervin Adolsphson appeared as an actor with Margit Manstad and Marta Ekstrom. “The Two of Us” is the first film in which Lisa Froberg appears on screen as an actress.

Danish Silent Film

Scott Lord Swedish Silent Film: Thomas Graal’s Basta Barn (Mauritz Still..

Peter Cowie, in his volume Scandinavian Film, writes, "The domestic relationships and erotic byplay in Stiller's comedies posses an application and validity beyond their immediate setting- and generation."
Victor Sjostrom playlist Mauritz Stiller

Sunday, March 19, 2023

Scott Lord Swedish Silent Film: Sangen om den eldroda blomman (Mauritz S...

"The Song of the Scarlet Flower" (Sangen och elroda blomman, 1919) was to star Lars Hanson, Greta Almroth, Lilebel Ibsen and Edith Erastoff. The film was directed by Mauritz Stiller with a photoplay written by Gustaf Molander. "Man's Way With Women" (Sangen och elroda Blommen, 1934) was to star Edvin Adolphson, Inga Tiblad, Aino Taube, Birgit Tengroth and Gull Maj-Nori . The film was directed by Per Axel Banner with the legendary photographer Julius Jaenzon with a script by the legendary photoplay dramatist Ragnar Hylten-Cavallius. "The Song of the Scarlet Flower" was with Gunnel Lindblom and Anita Bjork was directed by Gustaf Molander

The tinting of the first film provides contrast netween its individual scenes, moods and uses of nature as a background, its narrative creating a structure of seperate chapters.

Scholar Jaakko Seppalia attributes the rapid shooting of director Mauritz Stiller in "Song of the Scarlett Flower" as a direct influence on the film "The Logroller's Bride" (Koskenlaskijan marsian") directed by Finnish director Ekki Karu, particularly the use of several cameras and longshots during a rapid shooting sequence, both directors realizing that "heroic moments of action could be depicted in detail on film". Peter Cowie, in his volume Scandinavian Film, points out the "lyrical imagery of documentary realism" of the film while delineating the gap between the work of Mauritz Stiller and Victor Sjostrom as further narrowing into less of a contrast.

Mauritz Stiller

Scandinavian Silent Film

Swedish Silent Film, The Golden Age in Decline

Swedish Silent Film scholar Bo Florin makes note of the province held by Nils Bouveng at the newly structured Svenska Filmindustri after the merger had taken place of the smaller companies into one and that Bouveng had published an article entitled Swedish Film Advertising: How the Industry Plans to Conquer the World in the 1919 periodical Filmjournalen. Nils Bouveng of Swedish Biograph was very much responsible for the distribution of Swedish silent film in the United States. The publication Exhibitor's Herald during 1921 noted that although Bouveng was deemed to have thought the film market overcrowded, he would still export film "of merit" to the United States. It wrote,"Swedish Biograph has control of all product of Scandinavian studios and will offer only the cream of these pictures to American theaters...While Thy Soul Shall Bear Witness is regarded as its finest offering, company executives believe that Judge Not, Sir Arne's Treasure, Youth Meets Youth, Dawn of Love and Secret of the Monastery will compare favorably with any American made production." Actors that were anticipated to greet audiences in the United States included Mary Johnson, Gosta Ekman Renee Bjorling, Tora Teje, Edith Erastoff Lars Hanson, Karin Molander and Victor Sjostrom.
Scandinavian films were often peered at by American and British film magazines and for thos looking for film rveiews, extatextural discourse on European films can often be located within them. Picture Play Magazine during 1921 looked at the theater screens of Sweden. "Lars Hanson, a star of the Swedish constellation may be added to the European counterparts of American stars. Lesley Mason denominates him 'the Charles Ray of Sweden' and considers him the best male bet of Europe so far as American popularity is concerned. The most popular of the Swedish feminine stars, according to Mr. Mason, are Tora Teje, Karin Molander and Mary Johnson. During the following year, 1922, the periodical Picturegoer magazine in fact recognized actress Mary Johnson as being the leading actress from Sweden in an article about actors known internationally and transnational cinema but opined that as a foreign celebrity she entertained a more subdued fame, as though to denote a lack of commodification of the female in extratextural discourse, ie. exploitation. "Although she rejoices in the title of 'Sweden's Sweetheart", loveable, little Mary Johnson has never recieved a 'fan' letter from Sweden. The reason is extremely simple. There are no 'fans' there. The star, as a star and personality, simply doesn't count. The Swedish picturegoer is very critical as to story, technique and acting and highly appreciative too; but as to writing to the movie stars- perish the thought." Author Walter Bloem, in his volume The Soul of the Moving Picture from 1924, in a discussion on The Scene, singled out two Swedish Silent Film actresses by briefly mentioning Karin Molander and Tora Teje as having "the psychic power which spells variety in the creation of character" as contrasted with a plentiful supply of American actresses that presented "a soporific drama of a single sorrow or grief or pain, of a conventional melancholy, sadness or lament." Author Benjamin B. Hampton to the contrary, in his volume A History of the Movies, published during 1931, seems to transverse the period following the Golden Age of Silent Film as though from 1925-1930 were stagnant, typifying Swedish Silent Film as tendentious. "The Scandinavians, despite fine actors and directors, lean so frequently toward gloomy, sophisticated stories, that they have been negligible factors in production as far as production is concerned." Hampton overlooks that this is exaclty what helps to account for the film made in Sweden after 1925 having been attempts at commercial success through light hearted comedies.

During 1921, the periodical Motion Picture Magazine reported there would be an increase of importations from Stockholm and while it featured still photographs from the films Dawn of Love, The Secret of the Monsastery and A Fortuned Hunter, it marked that the storylines we're to be adaptations from the literature of Ibsen, Bjornsen and Selma Lagerlof and that the principal players had come from the Swedish theater, which aptly describes the way in which actress Greta Garbo would be introduced to Swedish film audiences two years later.

Swedish director Ivan Hedqvist during 1919 directed the Svenska Biografteatern film "The Downy Girl"(Dunungen) from a play by Selma Lagerlof, the film having starred Renee Bjorling, Jenny Tschernichin-Larssen and Mia Grunder in her first appearance on the silent screen. Among the films produced by Filmindustri Skandia during 1920 photographed by Raol Reynolds and directed by Rune Carlsten was the film "The Bomb" ("Sunshine and Shadow", "Bomben"), starring Karin Molander and Gosta Ekman. Actress Karin Molander had starred in the lost film "Surrogatet" during 1919, the being no surviving copies of the film. A short film lasting only slightly over a half hour, it was directed by Einar Braun for Filmindustri Scandia, Stockholm. Rune Carlsten in 1920 wrote and directed the film "A Modern Robinson" ("Robinson i skargarden") with actress Mary Johnson. The cinematographer to the film was Raoul Reynolds. Actress Mary Johnson married Norwegian actor Einor Rod after having appeared with him in the film. Director Rune Carlsten that year also directed Mary Johnson with Tora Teje and Hilda Castegren in "Family Traditions" ("Familjens traditioner") which he cos ripted as well, his co-author having had been being Sam Ask. The film was produced by Svensk Filmindustri and photographed again by Raoul Reynolds.
Solve Cederstrand directed his first film, "A Fateful Incognito" (Ett odesdigert kognito), starring Tage Alquist and Signe Selid in 1920. The film was written by Axel Essen and photographed by Kurt Jager, who went on to direct the film "Elaman maantiella" (1927) in Finland. Children were allowed to public exhibition of the 1920 film "The Shoemaker Prince",directed by Hjalmer Davidsen and scripted by Jens Locher for Palladium film. The film starred Maja Cassel as Princess Charlotte and Oda Larsen. In her paper The Excavation of New Swedish Childen's Film History, scholar Taichi Niibori, Stockholm University, asks if Pauline Brunius, wife of Swedish Silent Film director John Brunius was the "Founding Mother" of the Swedish Barnfilm with the film "Dragonfly" (1920) in a chapter on the Ambiguity of Generic Identity in exhibition strategies, that its "textural aspect symolises the contemporaneuous concept of children's films". It is a short film of 21 minutes running time. Brunius often made short films with child actors in the leading parts.
Scripted by Hjalmer Bergman as an adaptation of his 1917 work "Friarna pa Rockesnas", the 1921 film "Fru Mariannes fare" was directed by Gunnar Klintberg, the cinematographer to the film having had been Robert Olsson. The film starred Astri Torsell, Ingrid Sunblad, Aslag Lie-Erde and Gota Klintberg. Gunnar Klintberg continued by directing Astr Torsell in two more Swedish Silent Films, "The Love Circle" [Elisabet) with actresses Julia Hakanson and Gota Klintberg and in "Lord Saviles Brott", adapted from the work of Oscar Wilde. Gunner Klintberg's wife, actress Gota Klintberg had appeared with Signe Kolthoff during 1919 in the film "Jefthas dottar", directed by Robert Dinesen.

Formerly a journalist, Gustaf Edgren in 1922 had founded his own film company, Varmlandsfilm, making his screenwriting and directorial debut with the film "Miss at Pori" (The Young Lady of Bjorneborg/Froken pa Bjorneborg) starring actresses Rosa Tillman, Elsa Wallin and Edith Ernholm in her first film. The photographer was Adrian Bjurman. Adrian Bjorman was again the photographer for Gustav Edgren during 1923 for the film "People of Narke (Narkingara), which Edgren wrote and directed. Starring in the film were Anna Carlsten, Gerda Bjorne, and Maja Jerlstrom in her first appearance on screen. The film was also produced by Edgren's company Varmlandfilm, which would continue to produce only the flms of Gustaf Edgren.

Aparrently actress Karin Swanstrom was required to give co-directing screen credit to her screenwriter Oscar Rydqvist to the first film she was to direct, "Boman at the Fair" (Boman at the Exbhition, Boman pa Uttstallingen", 1923). Photographed by Gustav A Gustafson, the film starred Ingeborg Strandin and was the only film in which Karin Gardtman was to appear.

Although it joins the narrative of film history in a chapter concerned with the decline of Swedish Silent Film and its Golden Age, author Forsyth Hardy describes the work of Inga Tiblad and Einar Hanson in the 1923 Gustaf Molander film "Malapirater" as "pleasant acting". The film is a comedy. Ragnar Widestedt in 1923 directed Agda Helin and Jenny Tschernichin-Larsson in the film "Housemaids" (Hemslavirmor) written by Ragnar Hylten-Cavallius.

Frederick Andersson in 1923 directed the film "En rackarunge" with actresses Elsa Wallin and Mia Grunder. Gustaf V, King of Sweden, is listed as being in the film. It was photographed by Swedish cinematographer Sven Bardach.

Per Lindberg directed his first film during 1923, "Norrtullsligan", written by Hjalmer Bergman and starring Tora Teje, Stina Berg, Linnea Hillberg and Nils Asther. Peter Cowie, in his volume Scandinavian Cinema, commended the film by writing it "nelongs among the most courageous and enjoyable films of the European decade. Films prior to 1923 had presented individual female characters of flesh amd blood, but the Nortell Gang established a precedent....The screenplay by Hjalmer Bergman transcends the familiar image of women as decorative objects." Hjalmer Bergman was in fact the borther-in-law of director Per Lindberg.

Swedish Silent Film director Sigurd Wallen during 1923 directed the lost silent film "Friaren fran Landsvagen", which co-scripted with Sam Ask had starred Edvin Adolphson, Jenny Hasselquist, and Mia Grunden.

John Lindlof in 1924 directed the film "Man of Adventure" (Odets Man) with Inga Tiblad and Uno Henning, photographed by Gustav a Gustafson and written by J. Evicius. Knut Lambert who appears as an actor in the film and subsequently several later films, directed the lost film "Equal Among Equal" (Lika mot lika) in 1906, it having been the first film in which actress Tollie Zellman was to appear. Lambert appears with Tollie Zellman in the film as an actor with his wife Helfrid Lambert. There are no surviving copies of the film.

Sigurd Wallen during 1924 directed Inga Tiblad with Einar Froberg in " Greune pa Svanta" photographed by Henrik Jaenzon. Mostly known for being a theater director it was the first of only a handful of films Froberg had appeared in and the only film script that he had written. Froberg had directed an earlier film, "Lunda-indianer" starring Ture Sjogre and Malte Akerman, during 1920, his only time behind the camera, and had directed his own play, "Individerna Forbund' in Stockholm during 1919. Gustaf Molander appeared on stage in Stockholm in Froberg's play "Erna" under the direction of Gustaf Linden at The Drama (Dramaten) during 1922.

Ivar Kage in 1924 directed Gosta Hillberg and Edvin Adolphson in the film "When the Lighthouse Flashes" (Dar fyren blinken) for Svensk Ornfilm. The script was written by Esther Julin who had earlier adapted the novels of Selma Lagerlof to the screen for Victor Sjostrom. A fairly obscure or nonprolific photographer, Hellwig Rimmen during 1924 photographed the only film that he was to direct, "Hogsta Vinsten", it having starred actress Hilma Bolvig. The running time to the film was a half hour. Rimmen had began filming in Sweden under the direction of Einar Fronerg during the only film he was to direct, the 1920 film "Lunda-Indianer".

During 1925, Pauline Brunius was appearing on stage with Gosta Ekman in the play "Dalin och Drottningen", written by her brother in law, August Brunius. August Brunius has recently been described by one biographer as having been "the first professional Swedish critic", his having had begun writing essay on the theater in 1917.

Swedish Silent Film director William Larsson during 1925 directed the films "Broderna Ostermans huskors" with Jenny Tscherichin-Larsson and Frida Sporring and "For hemmet och flickan" with Jenny Tchernichin Larsson and Elsa Widborg in what was to be the first film in which she was to appear. The former was photographed by Arthur Thorell, the former by Henrik Jaenzon.

Swedish Silent Film director Sigurd Wallen during 1925 directed the film "Hennes lilla Majestat" starring actresses Margita Alfven, Stina Berg, Gucken Cederborg, and Olga Andersson in the first feature film in which she was to appear. With a photplay scripted by Henning Ohlson, the film was photographed by Axel Lindblom.

Olaf Molander, to bring the Golden Age of Swedish Silent Film to an anticlimax rather than a crescendo, directed only three silent films, the first in 1925, the next the following year and one the year following that. About the 1925 film, "Lady of the Camelias"(Damen med kameliorna) Forsyth Hardy writes,"The film derived some distinction from the delicately composed interiors and the touching performance of Tora Teje gave in response to Molander's skilled direction." Peter Cowie writes, "Although the film betrays the theatrical loyalties of its director, the camera observing most scenes from a single, rigid, set up, Molander knows how to rein in the histrionics of his players (Nils Arehn, for example creates an excellant Georges Duvall) and he copes well with the outdoor scenes." Photographed by Gustaf A. Gustafson, the films stars Ivan Hedqvist, Hilda Bjorgstrom and Lisskulla Jobs in the first film in which she was to appear.

Sigurd Wallen during 1926 directed the film "Ebberods Bank", the assistant director to the film Rolf Husberg. The film starred acresses Stina Berg, Jenny Tschernichin-Larsson and Carina May in her first of three screen appearances. Petschler-Film during 1926 produced the film "Brollopet i Brana" directed by Eric A. Petschler and written by Esther Julin and Lars Tessing. The film, photographed by Gustav A. Gustafson, teamed Edvin Adolphson, Mona Martensen and Emmy Albin.

"Mordbrannerskan" (1926), directed by John Lindlof, photographed by Gustaf A. Gustafson and starring Vera Schmiterlow and Brita Appelgren was the first film in which Birgit Tengroth was to appear.
Gustaf Edgren in 1927 directed "The Ghost Baron" (Spokbaronen) starring Karin Swanstrom and photographed by Adrian Bjuman, which was followed by "Black Rudolph" (Svarte Rudolph) in 1928, starring Inga Tiblad amd Fridolf Rhudin, both films having been written by Solve Cederstrand. The assistant director to the film "Black Rudolph" had been Gunnar Skogland. It was the first film in which actress Katie Rolfson was to appear.

Vilhelm Bryde directed his only film during 1927, "A Husband By Proxy" (En Perfekt Gentleman) a comedy scripted by Hjalmar Bergman starring Gosta Ekman, La Jana and Karin Swanstrom. The film was produced by Minerva Film. Bryde had acted in a more than a dozen Swedish Silent Films beggining with "Erotikon", directed by Mauritz Stiller.

Sam Ask wrote and directed the 1928 Swedish Silent Film "Erik XIV", it having starred Sophus von Rosen, Eva Monk af Rosenchold, Lisa Ryden and Gosta Werner. Nothwithstanding, despite the film "Erik XIV", author Peter Cowie sees 1928 as the beginning of a "barren period" ensuing after Charles Magnusson was "eased out of" Svenska Filmindustri by Ivar Kruger with Olaf Andersson as head of the firm. Charles Magnusson had folded, and left his position at Svenska Filmindustri during 1928, but the present author feels that perhaps author Peter Cowie is either mistaken or exaggerating when he claims that it had precipitated a "veritable exodus of talent"- the directors Victor Sjostrom and Mauritz Stiller admittedly were in the United States, but contrary to Cowie's volume Scandinavian Cinema, actor and actress Greta Garbo and Lars Hanson had u doubtedly left Sweden prior to the departure of Charles Magnusson, as had Einar Hanson, leaving only the screenwriters Hjalmer Bergman and concievably Tancred Ibsen. And yet the spirit of Cowie's passage views him as essential as a founder and catalyst, which he was.

Peter Cowie, in his volume Scandinavian Cinema chronicles the end of the silent era in Sweden as being a time of less output, "Swedish film production declined through the 1920's, reaching a nadir in 1929, when a mere six features were released."

Danish Silent Film

Victor Sjostrom
Victor Sjostrom