Wednesday, 10 February 2010

Stig Järrel

Just wanted to point out that had he been alive today, Stig Järrel would have turned 100 years old.

His most famous role, internationally at least, was in Hets (Torment aka Frenzy 1944), written by Bergman and directed by Alf Sjöberg and shot by Martin Bodin as an expressionistic nightmare. Järrel played Caligula, the feared latin teacher with Nazi tendencies in a brilliant performance.

But he also had a long and, for both, very fruitful working relationship with Hasse Ekman. Järrel was in 20 of the films Ekman directed, starting with Ekman's very first film as writer/director Med dej i mina armar (With You in My Arms 1940) and ending in 1960 with Kärlekens decimaler (The Figures of Love). He played both funny parts and straight parts. Among his most intense was the role as yet another latin teacher, cruel and psychotic, in Ekman's Lågor i dunklet (Flames in the Dark 1942), two years before Hets. He also played a philosophical vagabond in arguably Ekman's best film, Vandring med månen (Wandering With the Moon 1945), against Alf Kjellin and Eva Henning.

Järrel was also a beloved stage actor and comedian, as well as doing a lot of radio, and he made his first film in 1935. In short, he was one of the most gifted of Swedish actors and entertainers of not only his but many generations.

Not many clips available, but here's something. Although only in Swedish I'm afraid.

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