Dreamwalker and exorcist
The Swedish actor Max von Sydow, who became famous with the films of Ingmar Bergman and was also indispensable in Hollywood, has died.
The two of them stand rigidly at the memorial service, the little boy and the old admiral. The boy lost his father in the accident of the Russian Kursk submarine, which none of the crew survived. The admiral wanted to honor and comfort the children and women of the dead – he had resisted for many days to accept Western aid for the rescue of those trapped underwater in their submarine. The boy stands there silent and refuses to take the old man’s offered hand. The refused handshake has now become one of the strongest gestures.
Admiral Petrenko was the penultimate role of Max von Sydow in the film “Kursk” (2018) by Thomas Vinterberg. A man who stubbornly adheres to the traditional party principles, which makes him a stranger in a new, opening society. This strangeness, this homelessness von Sydow has played again and again in his decade-long acting career, starting with the films by Ingmar Bergman, which made him world famous. Numerous missions in Hollywood soon followed, including appearances in the universe of “Star Wars” or “Game of Thrones”. But of course it was the other way around, not the Sydow characters were strangers, but the society in which they were moving had changed beyond recognition. And the characters reacted to it with disconcertment and closure and hardening, and they got a somnambulistic aura from it.