Bo Widerberg

Elvira Madigan

Elvira Madigan

Bo Widerberg reached new heights of visual lyricism with this sublime retelling of a real-life nineteenth-century romantic tragedy. Bound by their all-consuming desire, a young circus tightrope walker (Pia Degermark, winner of the Cannes Film Festival’s Best Actress prize) and a lieutenant (Tommy Berggren) with a wife and children forsake everything to be together and escape to the countryside—only to see their lovers’ idyll gradually give way to poverty and desperation. With its painterly, sun-dappled images and indelible use of Mozart’s Piano Concerto no. 21, this 1960s art-house sensation is the most ravishing expression of Widerberg’s recurring theme of the tension between individual freedom and social responsibility.

Film Info

  • Sweden
  • 1967
  • 90 minutes
  • Color
  • 1.66:1
  • Swedish

Available In

Collector's Set

Bo Widerberg’s New Swedish Cinema

Bo Widerberg’s New Swedish Cinema

Blu-ray Box Set

4 Discs


Elvira Madigan
Pia Degermark
Elvira Madigan/Hedvig Jensen
Tommy Berggren
Sixten Sparre
Lennart Malmer
Cleo Jensen
Nina Widerberg
Cleo’s daughter
Bo Widerberg
Written by
Bo Widerberg
Edited by
Bo Widerberg
Cinematography by
Jörgen Persson
Production manager
Waldemar Bergendahl
Sound by
Sven Fahlén
Music by
W. A. Mozart
Music by
Antonio Vivaldi


Bo Widerberg’s New Swedish Cinema: Another Sweden
Bo Widerberg’s New Swedish Cinema: Another Sweden

While frequently drawing from the depths of his private life, the writer-director also sought to shake Swedish cinema out of a state of complacency by engaging with the country’s turbulent social landscape.

By Peter Cowie