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My Name Was Sabina Spielrein (2002)

90 min | Documentary, Biography, Drama

The history of psychoanalysis is littered with the discarded psyches of the women whose diagnoses were key to the fame of the great masters. One such woman was Sabina Spielrein. Unlike the rest, she didn't vanish forever from history. ...See moreThe history of psychoanalysis is littered with the discarded psyches of the women whose diagnoses were key to the fame of the great masters. One such woman was Sabina Spielrein. Unlike the rest, she didn't vanish forever from history. Elisabeth Márton's film relates, restages and remembers the tragic story of Spielrein's life as gleaned from a box of her papers discovered in 1977 in the cellar of Geneva's former Institute of Psychology. Spielrein was a young Russian-Jewish woman of 18 when she arrived in August 1904 at the Burghölzli clinic in Zurich where Carl Gustav Jung had set up shop. She was his first patient. He was 29 and married. Her cathexis was rapid and she formed an intense attachment to her young doctor, who seems to have reciprocated. But after Sigmund Freud's note (above) on the nefarious nature of females, the doctors hatched the theory of counter-transference to explain their feelings. Luckily, this wouldn't be Sabina's final contribution to psychoanalysis. Pronounced cured, she became a psychoanalyst herself and, within eight years, was practising alongside the founding fathers. The correspondence between Spielrein, Freud and Jung discovered that day in the Geneva basement has become essential to understanding the evolution of psychoanalysis ^Ö and the virtually insurmountable challenges facing women who sought to contribute in any role other than that of patient. Márton's deft re-enactments and the actors' dramatic readings of Spielrein's own words tell a chilling story, bringing to light both the work of this pioneer and the dark side of psychoanalysis. Documentary and drama carry Spielrein's life into the cross-hairs of warring ideologies (Communism, National Socialism). With a rare gift for melding subjectivity with biographical facts, Márton brings Sabina Spielrein back to life, body and soul. Written by B. Ruby Rich See less
Read more: Plot summary
Cinematographers
Sergej Jurizdirskij (docudrama segments, Russia) | Robert Nordström (docudrama segments)
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Status
Edit Released
Updated Sep 7, 2002

Release date
Jan 12, 2003 (United States)

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Cast

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20 cast members
Name STARmeter Known for
Eva Österberg
Sabina Spielrein Sabina Spielrein   See fewer
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Lasse Almebäck
Carl Gustav Jung Carl Gustav Jung   See fewer
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Mercedez Csampai
Sabina Spielrein as a child Sabina Spielrein as a child   See fewer
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Natalia Usmanova
Demented Woman Demented Woman   See fewer
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Jack Weil
Actor Actor   See fewer
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Anna Ringström
Actress Actress   See fewer
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Maria Thorgevsky
Sabina Spielrein (voice) Sabina Spielrein (voice)   See fewer
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Dan Wiener
Carl Gustav Jung (voice) Carl Gustav Jung (voice)   See fewer
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Helmut Vogel
Sigmund Freud (voice) Sigmund Freud (voice)   See fewer
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Irina Venieri
Mother (voice) Mother (voice)   See fewer
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Michail Kazinik
Father (voice) Father (voice)   See fewer
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Sergej Lantold
Pavel Scheftel (voice) Pavel Scheftel (voice)   See fewer
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Xenia Wiener
Sabrina as a child (voice) Sabrina as a child (voice)   See fewer
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Solomon Kazimirovskij
Grandfather (voice) Grandfather (voice)   See fewer
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Alan Pryko
Narrator (voice) Narrator (voice)   See fewer
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Ratings Breakdown

6.2 / 10 | 115 votes