Generally ignored satire of Ingmar Bergman movies
firstname.lastname@example.org | Wilmington, Delaware | 12/23/1998
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Professional reviewers seem to have missed the obvious; Montenegro is an amusing parody of Ingmar Bergman movies. It mixes Bergman's combination of intellectual and vulgar comedy with the usual ambiguities: from beginning to end, one is never sure whether the heroine (Susan Anspach in her best role) is merely a bored housewife or dangerously insane. Similarly, one can't be sure whether the world of Yugoslavian immigrants that she enters is safer or more dangerous than her normal life. The real key is found when it becomes obvious that the psychiatrist (hired by her husband) is more clearly disturbed than any potential patient. If you're tired of Woody Allen takeoffs on Bergman, see Montenegro."
Delightful but different. R and Lively. Anspach superb.
Dr. Alan D. Kardoff | Palm Bay, FL USA | 07/14/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)
"The movie begins with a family that seems to be duller than Dagwood & Blonde. Everyone seems safe. But Anspach, the lovely wife has a lust and yearning for excitement or at least a change of pace. She meets a neat guy who is part of gypsy clan. Somehow she wanders away from home and gets into a group of gypsies. The man's name is Montenegro. The vagabonds live a carefree life of abandon. Lots of love, lust and some women dancing in the buff for their own joy and group satisfaction. Anspach "tries" to resist Montenegro and their passion sizzles the screen. She adapts to the new life and seems more in it than to be a part of a family with a cockhold (dullard) of a husband. The end puzzled me in a way. Does she return for good or? I found the movie much more lively and enjoyable than the reviews. At the same time, this is NOT porn. The movie shows contrasting cultures (staid vs gypsy) and Anspach won my heart as well as admiration for her beauty and acting. I note a new version is coming out. The 81 edition is excellent. I am reluctant to part with this VHS. It is worth watching two-four times at intervals and when in different moods. Each time one comes away livelier and also seeing new perspectives.Dr. Alan Kardoff, Mgmtdr"
An inspired work/performance
M. Moore | 12/11/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"It's too bad Susan Anspach never became an international star. Her performance here is rich and detailed and full of subtlety. Many do not realize that this movie was based on a real life ex-Patriot wife who did poison her european family after being so fed up with her life and her uninvolved husband. There is some raw eroticism here (that was typical of the edgier filmmaking of the time) but it is surely not pornographic. The comedic situations in the film are dark and dry. I first watched it when it was in theatres and went back twice. I've watched it again through the years, and it still holds up. Mid-life crisis or not, I think anyone can relate to wanting to not just live life, but to feel it full force. The soundtrack includes the wonderful "Ballad of Lucy Jordan," by Marianne Faithful."
M. Moore | 12/11/2003
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Mrs. Jordan is a rich house wife. She got all the things that maybe all of us need: a family, a couple of kids, a palatial house by the sea... But the movie shows the emptiness of her life: she is bored, she doesn't like her life. Her husband decides get some holidays on Brazil these Christmas... She decides to go with him but at the airport she falls in with some Yugoslavian immigrants that run a bar called Zanzibar. Attracted by their way of living she enters Zanzibar, she feels very well, she feels something different, she realizes that doesn't need all the things she had... When she phones her family, she finds out that her daughter (a nine years old girl) has taken her place at home: the girl cooks, cleans... Her husband says "it is so peaceful when your mother is not here"... He doesn't love her... And this is the problem: since Mrs. Jordan is unable to understand that, that her family doesn't need her, that all her life was wasted, and although she feels alive in Zanzibar, she forgets that she doesn't belong to the world of the Yugoslavian immigrants: she is out of place. So really she has no way to go. Very sad. Understanding that all your life was a nonsense, understanding that all your life has always been empty I suppose is not easy: so she kills the man who becomes her lover in Zanzibar and then kills all her family including the psychiatrist her husband hired !!!: the movie got some comic moments, but is not a joke in anyway. Makavejev scoffs at family, materialism, capitalism..., he is telling you "forget the money, forget the clothes, just feel the heat of life..." Think of it.
Very good movie."