At a boarding school in the pre-war Austro-Hungarian Empire, a pair of students torture one of their fellow classmates, Basini, who has been caught stealing money from one of the two. The ... See full summary »
Laschen, a German journalist, travels to the city of Beirut during the fights between Christians and Palestinians to produce an essay about the situation. Together with his photographer, he... See full summary »
Rita Vogt is a radical West German terrorist who abandons the revolution and settles in East Germany with a new identity provided by the East German secret service. She lives in constant ... See full summary »
The widow of Bertolt Brecht, Helene Weigel, was extremely unsatisfied with this adaptation. On her behalf, the film was removed from public release. Only in 2011 the granddaughter of Brecht allowed the film to be restored and publicly shown (the restored version was released in 2014). See more »
No I am not talking about Michael Fassbender, but director, actor and writer Rainer Werner Fassbinder, who was one of the most notable German filmmakers in the 1970s and equally controversial. This 1970s movie was directed by Volker Schlöndorff ("The Tin Drum") and starred the aforementioned Fassbinder. You could probably say that the film's background is much more interesting than the movie itself. The widow of Bertolt Brecht, who wrote the play, Helene Weigel, really did not like the outcome and managed to keep it from being publicly released. Well.. now more than 40 years after Weigel's death, it finally was. Another interesting snippet about the film is that it includes an acting performances from Margarethe von Trotta who ended her acting career roughly 30 years ago, but to this day is possibly Germany's most known female director. Recently, she had huge success with directing a Hannah Arendt biopic.
Speaking about "Baal", it's certainly very weird and won't appeal to everyone, especially large audiences. The main character, who carries the name of the film keeps rambling about, raping and accosting people throughout these 90 minutes and is still admired by friends and females. Is the film sexist? Or just realistic? It's a fine line, so go decide for yourself. I have to say there wasn't really anything memorable about it, maybe the only thing I kind of liked was the way Baal's fate was narrated with the help of rhymes, a style we pretty much don't see anymore today and has something very traditional about it. Apart from that, the the direction is really wild and incongruent.
"Baal" is certainly not a film you should watch when you start digging into the works of Schlöndorff and Fassbinder. There's better options available, like the Oscar winning film by Schlöndorff I mentioned earlier and for Fassbinder I'd recommend "Warum läuft Herr R. Amok". Or just read about his life a bit, then watch one of his films. This should help you understand them better.
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