Perhaps the most referenced art movie of all time, Ingmar Bergmans The Seventh Seal
has such a hold on pop-culture consciousness because its so unbelievably good. The famous image of the grizzled knight Antonius Block (Max von Sydow) challenging Death (Bengt Ekerot) to a game of chess in an effort to buy time is merely the beginning. As Block and his squire travel the plague-ridden countryside in search of Blocks wife, the magnificently shot film reveals Blocks inner struggle with his own religious faith and his doubts about the society he fights to protect. If you only know The Seventh Seal
by reference or allusion, youre missing the beauty among the horror. The Webster Film Series screens a newly mastered print of The Seventh Seal
at 8 p.m. Friday through Sunday (September 14 through 16) at the Moore Auditorium (470 East Lockwood Avenue; 314-968-7487 or www.webster.edu/filmseries
). Tickets are $5 to $6.