[February 2023] Fassbinder Melo

“The impact of Sirk on Fassbinder, while well-known, cannot be overestimated. Fassbinder’s earliest movies from the late 1960s and early 1970s were self-consciously intellectual, avant-garde-tinged works of political modernism. After discovering the films of Sirk, Fassbinder realized that not only could the cinema be simultaneously emotionally engaging and socially critical, but that audiences might be able to swallow such criticism more easily if it could be subversively couched within the conventions of a highly emotional genre like the melodrama. While many of Fassbinder’s best films from 1971 through the premature end of his career in 1982 show the obvious influence of Sirk, it can perhaps be most strongly felt in 1974’s Ali: Fear Eats the Soul, the one time Fassbinder actively remade the plot of one of his master’s movies.” Michael Glover Smith

Thursday February 2 | 7PM The Merchant of Four Seasons aka Händler der vier Jahreszeiten West Germany 1971 d. Rainer Werner Fassbinder with Hans Hirschmüller, Irm Hermann as Irmgard, Hanna Schygulla, Klaus Löwitsch, Karl Scheydt, Andrea Schober, Kurt Raab, Ingrid Caven, Gusti Kreissl and Heide Simon. Colour. In German with English subtitles. 88 m

Thursday February 9 | 7PM The Bitter Tears of Petra von Kant aka Die bitteren Tränen der Petra von Kant West Germany 1972 d. Rainer Werner Fassbinder with Margit Carstensen, Irm Hermann, Hanna Schygulla, Gisela Fackeldey, Eva Mattes and Katrin Schaake. Colour. In German with English subtitles. 124 m

Thursday February 16 | 7PM Ali: Fear Eats the Soul aka Angst essen Seele auf West Germany 1974 d. Rainer Werner Fassbinder with Brigitte Mira, El Hedi ben Salem, Barbara Valentin, Irm Hermann, Rainer Werner Fassbinder, Karl Scheydt, Marquard Bohm, Walter Sedlmayr, Doris Mattes, Lilo Pempeit, Gusti Kreissl and Margit Symo. Colour. In German with English subtitles. 93 m

Thursday February 23 | 7PM Fox and His Friends aka Faustrecht der Freiheit West Germany 1975 d. Rainer Werner Fassbinder with Rainer Werner Fassbinder, Peter Chatel, Karlheinz Böhm, Harry Baer, Adrian Hoven, Ulla Jacobsson, Christiane Maybach, Hans Zander, Kurt Raab, Karl Scheydt, Peter Kern, Walter Sedlmayr, Brigitte Mira, Evelyn Künneke, Barbara Valentin, Ingrid Caven, Marquard Bohm, El Hedi ben Salem and Irm Hermann. Colour. In German with English subtitles. 123 m