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Friday, October 21, 2016

Die Ehe Der Maria Braun (aka The Marriage Of Maria Braun) (1979)

In post WWII Germany, a woman (Hanna Schygulla) remains true to the man (Klaus Lowitsch) she was married to for only 2 days before he left to fight in the war. Emotionally true to their love but not physically true as she does what she has to in order to survive and even succeed in the postwar years. Directed by Rainer Werner Fassbinder, this was his breakthrough film in the sense of international recognition combined with box office success. Some look to it as an allegory of Germany itself during its post war years but for me, it works quite well at face value, the destruction of a woman's soul when she strays from her purest intent. Schygulla is marvelous here, her performance a myriad of mysterious and conflicting layers. But unfortunately the rest of the cast isn't up to her level. Indeed, some of the supporting performances are downright amateurish. Considered the first of a trilogy but I find it far superior to the two that followed, LOLA and VERONIKA VOSS. With Ivan Desny, Gisela Uhlen and Gottfried John.     

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