If you’re looking for something to watch during this holiday season, you might consider Ingmar Bergman’s Fanny and Alexander, especially the four-part TV version rather than the shorter film version. It starts out with Christmas celebrations in the home of a wealthy Swedish family in the early 1900s, a pure delight. This is Bergman, though, so you go through the dark before you get back to the light. Below are some of film critic Vincent Canby’s comments (as quoted in Wikipedia). It’s one of my favorite movies.
“it has that quality of enchantment that usually attaches only to the best movies in retrospect, long after you’ve seen them, when they’ve been absorbed into the memory to seem sweeter, wiser, more magical than anything ever does in its own time. This immediate resonance is the distinguishing feature of this superb film, which is both quintessential Bergman and unlike anything else he has ever done before.” Canby finds it a “big, dark, beautiful, generous family chronicle”