Elvira Madigan (1967)

elvira madigan poster

Director: Bo Wideberg

Costume designer uncredited

First published on my previous blog on 25th January 2010

Elvira Madigan is a fairly unknown little gem by Swedish director Bo Wideberg. If you like fast-paced/twisted plot movies, this one’s not for you. Based on the true story of Elvira Madigan (Pia Degermark who also won the Best Actress award at the Cannes film festival for her role) , the film focuses on her relationship with Sixten Sparre (Thommy Berggren) over a couple of seasons. They fall in love and both run away (Elvira from the circus where she performs rope dancing and Sixten from the army). Borne and blinded by their feelings they’ll eventually have to face harsh realities and painful limitations.

I don’t know how the director managed to convey so much sadness. The omnipresence of the surrounding nature, the subtle washed-away earthtone colours definitely enhance the freshness and the simplicity of the plot. The colour red appears briefly at key moments despite you won’t see any of it in Elvira and Sixten’s tragic last minutes.


Elvira’s hand-painted wood mirror and a glimpse of her lace trimmed under-dress.





The straw hat, worn with a lemon yellow overcoat (and a small leather holdall bag).


Close up on her shoes


Made up evening outfit (the ‘tiara’ is a bit from a golden wood mirror, the veil, a black fringed tablecloth and the dress, a velvet curtain she took down from a window).


Two little red ribbons


Eating red berries


No escape for Elvira and Sixten, spades keep coming out at the tarot reader’s.

guide de morphologie corps,

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