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The Bitter Tears of Petra von Kant (1972)
"Die bitteren Tränen der Petra von Kant" (original title)

7.6
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Ratings: 7.6/10 from 4,051 users  
Reviews: 23 user | 35 critic

Petra von Kant is a successful fashion designer -- arrogant, caustic, and self-satisfied. She mistreats Marlene (her secretary, maid, and co-designer). Enter Karin, a 23-year-old beauty who... See full summary »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Margit Carstensen ...
...
Katrin Schaake ...
Eva Mattes ...
Gisela Fackeldey ...
Irm Hermann ...
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Storyline

Petra von Kant is a successful fashion designer -- arrogant, caustic, and self-satisfied. She mistreats Marlene (her secretary, maid, and co-designer). Enter Karin, a 23-year-old beauty who wants to be a model. Petra falls in love with Karin and invites her to move in. The rest of the film deals with the emotions of this affair and its aftermath. Fassbinder tells his story in a series of 5 or 6 long scenes with extended uses of a single camera shot and deep focus. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Sex is the ultimate weapon.

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

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Details

Country:

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Release Date:

5 October 1972 (West Germany)  »

Also Known As:

The Bitter Tears of Petra von Kant  »

Box Office

Budget:

DEM 325,000 (estimated)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

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Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Rainer Werner Fassbinder:  Man in newspaper photograph with Petra and Karin. See more »

Quotes

Petra von Kant: I felt nothing for him anymore. Far from it, it got worse. When we ate together his chewing... it was like an explosion. When he swallowed my gorge rose. The way he cut meat, held his cigarette, his whiskey glass... it all seemed so absurd, so affected. I was ashamed for him because I imagined everyone must see him as I did. Of course, it was hysteria. Panic, Sidonie. There was nothing left to save. The end.
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Crazy Credits

Gewidmet dem, der hier Marlene wurde. (Dedicated to the one who became Marlene here) See more »

Connections

Remade as The Politics of Fur (2002) See more »

Soundtracks

The Great Pretender
Written by Buck Ram
Performed by The Platters
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User Reviews

Great film, glad I don't live there
1 May 1999 | by (Dublin, Ireland) – See all my reviews

One reviewer described Bitter Tears as "a high camp lesbian slumber party", and that sort of sums it up, except that the blankets are like the dressing gown Medea made for Jason's wife - dipped in acid. Fassbinder adapted it from his own play and basically filmed a performance - there's only one set, Petra's apartment, and the characters come and go exactly as in the play, with one crucial difference in the last minute of the movie. All the usual suspects are here; Margit Carstensen has a ball as the Swansonesque Petra, Hanna Schygulla slinks and drawls as Petra's lover, Irm Hermann is at her beaky best as the watchful Marlene. It all culminates in the birthday party to end all birthday parties. A tough one to get into, but you'll never see anything like it anywhere else.


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