Repressive Love: The Films of Rainer Werner Fassbinder
“Love is the best, most insidious, most effective instrument of social repression,” claimed New German Cinema’s most notorious bad boy, Rainer Werner Fassbinder. His critique of a society based on alienation, power, and gender set the tone for the post–World War II rebirth of German cinema. His career was marked by an unprecedented forty-four films in seventeen years. Dr. Sandy Frieden, who has been teaching German film at the University of Houston for twenty years, will lead a discussion of four of Fassbinder’s most significant films.
Each session will begin promptly at 5 p.m. with a light supper buffet in the private dining room of the MFAH Café Express, followed by Dr. Frieden’s lecture. We will then proceed to the Brown Auditorium of the Museum to view the selected films, all of which are featured in the Museum’s Fassbinder series. Supper and film tickets are included in the seminar package. Class participants will be eligible for discounted tickets to the additional films in the Fassbinder series.
Sunday, November 7: The Marriage of Maria Braun (1978): A marriage caught in the middle of an air-raid on Nazi Germany reflects German history through the life (and clothes!) of the glamorous Hanna Schygulla.
Sunday, November 14: Effi Briest (1972/74): Fassbinder reinterprets the ultimate tragic love story with his German version of Madame Bovary or Anna Karenina.
Sunday, November 21: Fox and His Friends (1974): A young man (played by Fassbinder) finds friends, love, and treachery when he wins the lottery.
Sunday, December 5: The Bitter Tears of Petra von Kant (1972): This Fassbinder cult film, set to the music of Verdi and the Platters, depicts a love story placed in a claustrophobic room full of women.