Lola (1981)

R  |   |  Comedy, Drama  |  4 August 1982 (USA)
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Reviews: 13 user | 20 critic

Ten years after the war, West Germany's market economy is booming. Into an unnamed city that's rife with corruption comes a new building commissioner, Herr von Bohm, committed to progress ... See full summary »

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Cast overview, first billed only:
Mario Adorf ...
Matthias Fuchs ...
Helga Feddersen ...
Karin Baal ...
Lola's Mother
Ivan Desny ...
Elisabeth Volkmann ...
Hark Bohm ...
Karl-Heinz von Hassel ...
Timmerding (as Karl Heinz von Hassel)
Frau Schuckert
Sonja Neudorfer ...
Frau Fink
Y Sa Lo ...


Ten years after the war, West Germany's market economy is booming. Into an unnamed city that's rife with corruption comes a new building commissioner, Herr von Bohm, committed to progress but also upright. He's smitten by Marie-Louise, a single mother who's his landlady's daughter. Von Bohm does not realize she is also Lola, a singer at a bordello and the mistress of Schuckert, a local builder whose profits depend on von Bohm's projects. When von Bohm discovers Marie-Louise's real vocation and looks closely at Schuckert's work, will this social satire play out as a remake of "Blue Angel," a visit of Chekhov to West Germany, or an update of Jean Renoir's "Rules of the Game"? Written by <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Comedy | Drama


R | See all certifications »





Release Date:

4 August 1982 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Lola, une femme allemande  »

Filming Locations:

Box Office


DEM 3,500,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Part of the BRD Trilogy along with The Marriage of Maria Braun (1979) and Veronika Voss (1982). "BRD" stands for Bundesrepublik Deutschland, the official name of West Germany and of the united contemporary Germany, period in which those three stories takes place. See more »


The photograph above the mayor's desk shows downtown Houston, Texas as it looked in the 1960s. The film is set in the late 1950s. See more »


Schukert: Take her. Undress her. Throw her on the bed. Do whatever you want to her. She's a whore.
See more »


References Lost Horizon (1937) See more »


Performed by Rudi Schuricke
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User Reviews

Lorelei and the Man Who Understood and Admired Her
11 August 2006 | by (Virginia, USA) – See all my reviews

"Lola" (1981), the second chapter of Fassbinder's BRD Trilogy is an update and a remake (in a way) of "The Blue Angel"(1930) directed by Josef von Sternberg with magnificent Marlene Dietrich as a singer Lola Lola but Fassbinder's film is marvelous by itself. Like "Marriage of Maria Braun" (1979) and "Veronica Voss" (1982) "Lola" tells the story of a strong and beautiful woman and her survival and search for love, success and happiness in postwar Germany. It's superb and dazzling and I kept smiling all time while I was watching it. It's an old story (and what is new in this world? Carmen had been dead and Lola Lola is old) but the style, the approach, the times, the place, his use of colors that seem to sing, to smile, to scream and to touch you gently are unique. Did he sell his soul to the Devil for these colors? The dresses, the songs, Barbara's voice, her legs that grow from the ears, her hair, oh my God, her and Hanna's (in "Marriage of Maria Braun that I will finish watching tonight) golden hair, these witching Loreleis, the walking sensuality - Fassbinder understood and admired women and I admire him for this.

"Lola" is a combination of many genres- satire, drama, comedy, and musical. It mixes glamor with very serious themes. Striking Barbara Sukowa is a singer-whore Lola who sets up to seduce the incorruptible local building commissioner, unbelievably blue-eyed Armin Mueller-Stahl. Lola went through many losses, humiliations, and disappointments during the war and right after it and she wants to be an independent business woman for which she decided to win over the man everyone kept telling was not for her.

As Barbara Sukowa recalls, Fassbinder told the critical stories but he did not make them dry or theoretical. He did not use the intellectual or academic approach to his stories. He hated gray "kitchen" naturalism and he was mixing Hollywood glamor with specific German realities creating his own style that was sexy and appealing. While many German film makers of his generation were influenced by the American directors like Martin Scorsese and John Cassavetes, Fassbinder was very impressed by Douglas Sirk and his style.

Rainer Werner Fassbinder died at the age of 37 just as he was completing his last movie, "Querell". He had made over 30 films during 12 years. He began directing in 1969 revealing in his work New Germany, often heartless and materialistic. Fassbinder's talent and the quantity and quality of his output are incredible. It is like he knew he would die young and he was obsessed by finishing as many films as it was physically possible, majority of which (including "Lola") were way ahead of their time.

33 of 40 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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