A Guide to the Six Best Ingrid Bergman Movies

Considered one of the best actresses of all time, Swedish actress Ingrid Bergman made a name for herself first in Swedish and German films, and then in American film and around the world. The classic films starring Ingrid Bergman include Casablanca (1942), For Whom the Bell Tolls (1943), Spellbound (1945), Notorious (1946), Joan of Arc (1948), and Anastasia (1956), for which Bergman won her second Academy award as best actress as the titular character.

Ingrid Bergman became a sensation thanks to her ease on camera, while her inate reserve made sure that the public was forever interested in her life off-screen as well.

Let’s explore Ingrid Bergman’s illustrious career, from her early life to iconic roles in Casablanca, love affairs, awards, and famous co-stars:


Early life of Ingrid Bergman

Ingrid Bergman was born in Stockholm in 1915, the daughter of photographer Justus Samuel Bergman and Frieda Henriette Auguste Louise Bergman.

Bergman attended to the Royal Dramatic Theatre School in Stockholm before being cast in her first films, and eventually making her way to Hollywood.


A black and white photo of Ingrid Bergman leaning against a wooden fence.A smiling woman, Ingrid Bergman, sitting on a couch.


In 1939, producer David O. Selznick offered Bergman the chance to to be in her first English-language film, Intermezzo: a Love Story, a remake of a Swedish film in which Bergman also starred. The film was a success, and Bergman quickly became a sought-after actress. Bergman continued to appear in a number of American movies as her star rose.



Ingrid Bergman’s career in the USA

While married to her first husband, Swedish doctor Petter Aron Lindström (with whom she had her first child, Friedel Pia Lindström), Bergman had a much-publicized love affair with Italian director Roberto Rossellini during the filming of Stromboli (1950).

Bergman bore a child with Rossellini, then divorced Lindström. Bergman and Rossellini then married and had twins: actress Isabella Rossellini and academic Isotta Rossellini. During that marriage, from 1950 – 1957, Rossellini proved possessive, not allowing Bergman to work with other directors.

When they divorced, Bergman returned to Hollywood. Throughout her career, Bergman would be linked to many men (similar to Swedish actress Inger Stevens), for which she was publicly criticized, but she remained unapologetic and true to herself. She is quoted as saying, “People saw me in Joan of Arc, and declared me a saint. I’m not. I’m just a woman, another human being.”

Though Bergman died in 1982 at the age of 67, her work has stood the test of time; her performances come across as elegant and authentic, from her early work in Swedish film to her final films.

If you’re looking to learn about the best Ingrid Bergman movies, get ready for a journey though some of the best films of all time.



These are the six essential films of Swedish actress Ingrid Bergman:

Casablanca (1942)

Considered the third greatest film of all time according do the American Film Institute, this is an iconic film that introduced some of the most quoted movie lines ever. Matching Bergman with co-star Humphrey Bogart, Casablanca tells the story of Rick Blaine and Ilsa Lund, former lovers who meet again toward the end of WWII, where Rick has a bar and gambling joint in Casablanca.


A movie poster featuring Ingrid Bergman in Casablanca.Three people, including Ingrid Bergman, standing in front of Rick's Cafe American.


Isla and her husband, a Czech resistance fighter, ask Rick to help them escape to America by giving them “letters of transit” he has in his possession. Ilsa is still in love with Rick, but feels she must do her duty towards her husband; she thinks he will escape and she will stay with Rick. The dramatic final scene – where Rick puts Ilsa on the plane with her husband despite her protestations – is one of the most famous in cinema history.

Casablanca is a treasure trove of the most widely cited movie lines in cinematic history. “Of all the gin joints in all the towns in all the world, she walks into mine,” encapsulates the irony and fatefulness of the story. “Here’s looking at you, kid,” a tender and enduring expression of love, remains an iconic phrase. “We’ll always have Paris,” captures the bittersweet nostalgia of lost love. “Play it, Sam. Play ‘As Time Goes By,'” is forever associated with longing and memory.

“Round up the usual suspects” reflects the cynicism and intrigue of the film’s wartime setting. Lastly, “Louis, I think this is the beginning of a beautiful friendship,” concludes the film with hope and camaraderie.

This film won the Academy Award for best picture in 1942.


Do they actually say “Play it again, Sam” in Casablanca?

In the film, the actual line is “Play it, Sam. Play ‘As Time Goes By.'” This line is spoken by Ingrid Bergman’s character, Ilsa Lund, to the piano player, Sam, played by Dooley Wilson.

It’s a pivotal moment in the movie that’s often misremembered as “Play it again, Sam” in popular culture.




Gaslight (1944)

“Gaslight” is a psychological thriller directed by George Cukor. The the film stars Ingrid Bergman, Charles Boyer, Joseph Cotten, and Angela Lansbury in her first film role.


A black and white photo of Ingrid Bergman laying on a chair.A poster for the movie Gaslight featuring Ingrid Bergman.


Where Does the Term “Gaslighting” Come From?

The term “gaslight,” meaning to emotionally manipulate one into distrusting his/her own memory and sanity, comes from the Patrick Hamilton play “Gas Light” (1938), on which the film Gaslight (1944) is based.

Ingrid Bergman played Paula, the woman being abused by her husband, played with explosive intensity by Charles Boyer.

He slowly makes her believe she is going insane, with the goal of having her institutionalized. Turns out, he murdered her wealthy aunt in order to steal her valuable jewels, but never got the goods and is still after them, believing them to be in Paula’s possession.

What could come across as hokey or overly-dramatic is instead tense and suspenseful thanks to Bergman’s quiet desperation. This is a film that showcases how her understated acting can speak volumes.

Bergman won her first Academy award for best actress for this film.



Notorious (1946)

Oh, this one is sexy! A story of a love triangle between spies has two men in love with Ingrid Bergman’s Alicia Huberman: T.R. Devlin, played by Cary Grant and Alexander Sebastian, played by Claude Rains.


A black and white photo of Ingrid Bergman in a dress.A movie poster featuring Ingrid Bergman for 'Noble'.


Considered a turning point artistically (and one of the best movies) for director Alfred Hitchcock, Notorious is known not only for its classic noir performances, but also its boundary-pushing storyline.

Alicia Huberman is well-known for her “promiscuous” past, and there’s a kiss in the film that only barely made it past the censor’s “three second rule” by having Grant and Bergman continually break the kiss, then begin again.

These two powerhouses have a wonderful, easy chemistry; Bergman gave the role all her considerable charm. The film is pulpy, engaging, and electric.



Journey to Italy (1954)

Based on the book Duo by Colette, Journey to Italy follows an English couple as they travel to Naples to sell an inherited villa. Not much happens in the film; it’s mostly about the couple’s quietly strained relationship and the small things that chip away at love.


Ingrid Bergman's Journey to Italy - blu-ray.Ingrid Bergman holding a camera in front of a hot spring.


The film starred Bergman and was directed by Roberto Rossellini, who was at the time married to Bergman. The incredibly beautiful backdrop of Italy provides a stark contrast to the petty, uncomfortable back-and-forth between the two leads.

The final act of the film brings the two back together in an unexpected, tentative way.

A man and woman, reminiscent of Ingrid Bergman's classic elegance, sit in a car.



Murder on the Orient Express (1974)

The original film adaptation of Agatha Christie’s 1934 train murder mystery is a classic of the genre.

Though Bergman appeared in the relatively small role of Greta Ohlsson in the film (one she insisted on, after being offered the bigger role of Princess Dragomiroff), her impact is strongly felt in her one monologue.


A poster featuring Ingrid Bergman for Murder on the Orient Express.A woman, Ingrid Bergman, holding an oscar award.


Director Sidney Lumet did the speech as one long shot; Bergman’s emotional journey within that shot is a marvel.

Bergman received her third and final Academy award for this film, for best supporting actress.



Autumn Sonata (1978)

This performance from Bergman, in one of the later films, is considered one of her bravest. Starring Liv Ullmann as a daughter who confronts her neglectful mother and famous classical pianist, Bergman.

A black and white photo of a man and woman holding hands, featuring Ingrid Bergman.Autumn sonata starring Ingrid Bergman.


Directed by Swedish legend Ingmar Bergman, the film meditates on the parent-child relationship and forgiveness.

The film earned her a best actress Oscar nomination.



Have more questions? Take a look at our FAQs to discover more about Swedish actress Ingrid Bergman:


How many movies did Ingrid Bergman make?

Ingrid Bergman starred in 52 movies (including TV movies), three TV series, and two short films.


How many awards did Ingrid Bergman win?

Bergman won three Academy Awards for these films: Gaslight, Anastasia(both for best actress), and Murder on the Orient Express (best supporting actress).

She won a Tony Award for best actress for Joan of Lorraine (1947).

She won two Primetime Emmys for Outstanding Leading Actress in a Limited Series or TV Movie: first for The Turn of the Screw (1960) and second for A Woman Called Golda (1982), which was awarded posthumously.


Are Ingmar Bergman and Ingrid Bergman related?

No, they are not related. Bergman is a fairly common name in Sweden. Ingmar Bergman did marry “Ingrid von Rosen” who is occasionally referred to as “Ingrid Bergman” in poorly worded biographies, making it very confusing!


Who are some of Ingrid Bergman’s most famous co-stars?

Bergman was one of the most beloved actresses of her day. Some of her most celebrated romantic co-stars in film include:

  • Spencer Tracy in Dr. Jekell and Mr. Hyde (1941)
  • Humphrey Bogart in Casablanca (1942)
  • Gary Cooper in For Whom the Bell Tolls (1943) and Saratoga Trunk (1946)
  • Gregory Peck in Spellbound (1945)
  • Bing Crosby in Bells of St. Mary (1945)
  • Cary Grant in Notorious (1946) and Indiscreet (1958)


How old was Ingrid Bergman in Casablanca?

Ingrid Bergman was 26 years old when the film was shot, and 27 years old when the film was released November 26, 1942.


What movies did Cary Grant and Ingrid Bergman make together?

Cary Grant and Ingrid Bergman starred together in two films together: Notorious (1946), and a reunion 12 years twelve years later in Indiscreet (1958). Bergman plays Anna Kalman, a famous actress, and Cary Grant portrays Philip Adams, a charming diplomat. The film explores the complications that arise when Anna discovers that Philip isn’t entirely truthful about his marital status.

A black and white photo of a Cary Grant and Ingrid Bergman in an embrace, while Ingrid is laughing.

Cary Grant said at the time:

“There are only seven movie stars in the world whose name alone will induce American bankers to lend money for movie productions, and the only woman on the list is Ingrid Bergman.”


How many children did Ingrid Bergman give birth to?

Ingrid Bergman had four children over the course of her life: Pia Lindström, Roberto Rossellini, and twins: Isabella Rossellini and Isotta Rossellini.


Pia Lindström

Ingrid’s first child, Pia, was born on August 8, 1938. Pia pursued journalism and broadcasting, working as a television news anchor and reporter.

Roberto Rossellini

Ingrid Bergman’s second child, Roberto, was born on February 2, 1950. He is a retired businessman and has generally stayed out of the public eye.

Isabella Rossellini

Ingrid’s third child, Isabella, was born on June 18, 1952. Like her mother, Isabella became a successful actress and model. She has appeared in numerous films and television shows, gaining recognition for her talent and beauty. Isabella has had a successful and versatile career in the entertainment industry.

Ingrid Rossellini

Ingrid Bergman’s forth child, Isotta, was born on June 18, 1952. Her name at birth was Isotta Rossellini, which as later changed to Ingrid Rossellini. She is known for her work as an academic. She is the president of The Howard Gilman Foundation, an organization that supports various cultural and artistic initiatives.


Ingrid Bergman in a summer dress holding her twins in two baby baskets in each hand.Ingrid Bergman strolling with son Roberto Rossellini Jr. in Stockholm in the 1950s.


Ingrid Bergman drives a motor boat with her son, Roberto Rossellini Jr.; the twins, Isabella and Isotta Rossellini; and her eldest daughter, Pia Lindström, in 1957


How many husbands did Ingrid Bergman have?

Ingrid Bergman had three husbands during her lifetime:


Petter Aron Lindström

Ingrid’s first husband was a Swedish dentist, who later became a neurosurgeon. They were married from 1937 to 1950 and had one child together, Pia Lindström.

Roberto Rossellini

Ingrid’s second husband was an Italian film director. They were married from 1950 to 1957 and had three children together: Roberto Rossellini, Isabella Rossellini, and Isotta Rossellini.

Lars Schmidt

Ingrid’s third husband was a theatrical producer. They were married from 1958 until Ingrid Bergman’s death in 1982. They did not have any children together.


An old black and white photo of a bride and groom featuring Ingrid Bergman and Petter Aron Lindström in SwedenIngrid Bergman and Roberto Rossellini—pictured here with their three children, in 1956
Ingrid Bergman and Lars Schmidt, Swedish theater producer and agent, and Ingrid's third husband, sitting on the ground outsite



What are some Ingrid Bergman quotes?

“I don’t regret a thing I’ve done. I only regret the things I didn’t do. Happiness is good health and a bad memory. I don’t worry about it because we are all growing old.”

“Be yourself. The world worships the original.”

“Getting old is like climbing a mountain; you get a little out of breath, but the view is much better!”

“Happiness is good health and a bad memory.”


How did Ingrid Bergman die?

Ingrid Bergman was diagnosed with breast cancer in 1973. Despite her illness, she continued to work in the film industry. She underwent treatment and surgeries, including a mastectomy, and her career saw a resurgence with roles in films such as “Murder on the Orient Express” (1974) and “Autumn Sonata” (1978).

In one of her last interviews, she said:

“I’d like to live my life in the most intense way, until the last possible moment. At some point, you have to make up with the adversary circumstances… you have to submit. Submission is part of life.”

Ingrid Bergman died on August 29, 1982, on the day of her 67th birthday. She passed away at her home in London, England, from complications related to breast cancer.


Want more great Scandinavian films? Check out our guide to Danish film, Swedish film, and the Dogme95 Manifesto.



Our website is dedicated to providing authoritative insights and in-depth analysis of iconic figures in the world of cinema. As a team of seasoned film enthusiasts, we strive to offer a comprehensive understanding of legends like Ingrid Bergman. If you have more insights to share or questions about the world of Scandinavian cinema, we encourage you to reach out to us via email: hello[@] Your contributions and inquiries are valued!

This article was originally published August, 2018.

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Rebecca Thandi Norman

Rebecca Thandi Norman is a co-founder and Editor-in-Chief at Scandinavia Standard.