Mai Zetterling

Loving Couples

Loving Couples

The title of Mai Zetterling’s boldly iconoclastic debut feature—adapted from a cycle of seven novels by the provocative feminist writer Agnes von Krusenstjerna—drips with irony. In 1915, three pregnant women from varying social backgrounds (Harriet Andersson, Gunnel Lindblom, and Gio Petré) enter a maternity ward. Cue a swirl of perspective-shifting flashbacks that, with searing psychological insight, illuminate the divergent yet interconnected experiences that brought them there—and that came to a head during one lavish, debauched Midsommar celebration. Wildly subversive in its treatment of sexuality, gender, class, religion, marriage, and motherhood, Loving Couples is as electrifying a first feature as any in cinema history, announcing the arrival of an uncompromising artist in pursuit of raw emotional truth.

Film Info

  • Sweden
  • 1964
  • 118 minutes
  • Black & White
  • 1.66:1
  • Swedish

Available In

Collector's Set

Three Films by Mai Zetterling

Three Films by Mai Zetterling

Blu-ray Box Set

3 Discs


Loving Couples
Harriet Andersson
Gunnel Lindblom
Adèle Holmström
Gio Petré
Anita Björk
Gunnar Björnstrand
Dr. Jacob Lewin
Jan Malmsjö
Heinz Hopf
Lt. Bernhard Landborg
Anja Boman
Eva Dahlbeck
Mrs. Landborg
Hans Strååt
Thomas Möller
Bengt Brunskog
Tord Holmström
Mai Zetterling
Screenplay by
Mai Zetterling
Screenplay by
David Hughes
Based on the book Fröknarna von Pahlen (The Misses von Pahlen) by
Agnes von Krusenstjerna
Produced by
Göran Lindgren
Sven Nykvist
Roger Wallis
Paul Davies
Production designer
Jan Boleslaw
Costume designer
Birgitta Hahn
Assistant director
Bertil Ohlsson
Assistant director
Lena Malmsjö
Marianne Höök
Katinka Faragó


Mai Zetterling: Cinema Artist
Mai Zetterling: Cinema Artist

A pioneering feminist artist drawn to universal themes, the Swedish director mined the complexity and humor of human behavior in films that courted controversy and cultivated a sense of detachment.

By Mariah Larsson