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Katzelmacher (1969)

Jorgos, a migrant worker from Greece, joins a group of young people in Munich usually hanging around. This foreigner incites hostility and jealousy among them, and he is insulted as a "... See full summary »
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Cast

Cast overview:
Hanna Schygulla ... Marie
Lilith Ungerer ... Helga
Rudolf Waldemar Brem ... Paul
Elga Sorbas ... Rosy
Doris Mattes Doris Mattes ... Gunda
Irm Hermann ... Elisabeth
Peter Moland Peter Moland ... Peter
Hans Hirschmüller ... Erich
Harry Baer ... Franz (as Harry Bär)
Hannes Gromball Hannes Gromball ... Klaus (as Hannes Grombal)
Katrin Schaake ... Frau im Restaurant
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Storyline

Jorgos, a migrant worker from Greece, joins a group of young people in Munich usually hanging around. This foreigner incites hostility and jealousy among them, and he is insulted as a "Communist" and "Greek dog". After having been attacked, Jorgos talks to Maria of his wish to return home. Written by L.H. Wong <as9401k56@ntuvax.ntu.ac.sg>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

West Germany

Language:

German

Release Date:

22 November 1969 (West Germany) See more »

Also Known As:

O Machão See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

DEM 80,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Antiteater-X-Film See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Shot in nine days. See more »

Crazy Credits

Es ist besser neue Fehler zu machen, als die alten bis zur allgemeinen Bewußtlosigkeit zu konstituieren (Yaak Karsunke) See more »

Connections

Featured in Die Nacht der Regisseure (1995) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

An early Fassbinder gem
17 May 2012 | by jandesimpsonSee all my reviews

Of all the films that make me laugh out loud, "Katzelmacher is probably the blackest. How else to justify the enjoyable quality of a movie in which almost all the characters, if not human scum, act that way most of the time. Make no mistake, the young Fassbinder knew exactly what he was doing when he made this early brilliant piece. Every shot has been planned with a single mindedness that enhances the meaningfulness of his exploration of xenophobia and its causes in dissatisfaction with financial circumstances and unfulfilled human relationships. Some eight or so young people of mixed sex pass their time in mainly useless activities. When they are not having it off with one another, generally in a lacklustre way, or playing cards in the local café they spend the time lounging about in the street outside an apartment building, their apartness from each other expressed in the horizontal line they form as they lean against a railing generally staring towards the camera. The building behind is not a slum. It could be a middle class dwelling in any town. The white wall behind is punctuated by windows with flower boxes. This and other settings are never sordid, merely dull. Inside buildings, by seldom moving, the camera reflects the inertia of these aimless people. For the first third of the film nothing much happens. Then there is the sudden entry of a young Greek worker, played by Fassbinder himself, to ignite the latent xenophobic prejudices of the rest of the cast. They wind each other up by exaggerating all those qualities they feel the Greek might have, including being a rapist and worst of all a communist. The men need little to start them off once they learn from one who shares a lodging with the Greek that he has a bigger dick than the rest of them. For the women it is the unfounded rape allegation that sparks indignation and a call for vigilante violence. At the same time as being enormously funny, this part of the film in its depiction of xenophobia as the product of ignorance is hammered home with ferocious integrity. Perhaps the most original touch is the punctuation of the action at various points with brief sequences in which different pairs of characters stroll very slowly between the same two rows of garages to the accompaniment of a badly over-pedalled performance of a piano Schubert waltz. Their laconic comments have the function of a kind of Greek chorus, binding the film together in a curiously subtle way. If you are looking for an early Fassbinder gem, "Katzelmacher" is the one I would recommend.


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