Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|The Fassbinder Collection II |
Martha/In A Year With 13 Moons
Actors: Volker Spengler, Ingrid Caven, Gottfried John, Elisabeth Trissenaar, Margit Carstensen
Director: Rainer Werner Fassbinder
Genres: Indie & Art House, Drama, Mystery & Suspense
MARTHA — IN A YEAR WITH 13 MOONS — He has been called everything from a petty tyrant to the last great filmmaker of the 20th century. In little more than ten years, Rainer Werner Fassbinder created an amazing legacy of forty... more »
Two movies, with feature length documentaries and extras gal
W. T. Hoffman | Pennsylvania, United States | 12/02/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I'm a huge fan of Fassbinder, and have about 15 of his films, having seen many others as well. As far as a starting point for a new student of this master of cinema, I suppose this is as good a point as any. (My intro was Querelle, which is his worst film, so I never saw another Fassbinder film for a long time, until I saw "Marriage of Maria Braun", and then found out how great a director he was.) Maybe "Maria Braun" is a good place to start, for a conventional film, but then again, conventionality isnt Fassbinder's strong suite. The 2 DVD box set, has a lot of extras, to begin with, which are not mentioned in the product discription. "13 Moons" has an intro by Richard Linklater (Slackers, Waking Life, A Scanner Darkly, School of Rock, etc), and two interviews as extras :The editor of the movie, and a conversation with Werner Schroeter, and Juliane Lorenz, both long associated with his films. The film MARTHA, has a feature length documentary connected to it, with interviews of Hanna Schygulla, Ulli Lommel, and the famous Cinematographer, who shot most of Fassbinder's films until moving to Hollywood, Michael Ballhaus. (He won an academy award for THE DEPARTED, and has filmed tons of top hollywood features.) Plus, even Wem Wenders is interviewed in the documentary. So, not only are you getting two fantastic films, but the extras are worth the price of admission themselves. Now, a quick word might be nice about the films. IN A YEAR WITH 13 MOONS (an ancient astrological omen of Doom and bad luck), we have the story of a man who fell in love with another man. OK, we handle homosexuality in the USA so maturely, that's no problem, right? But, the man was told by the object of his affections, "Its too bad you're not a woman, I could really love you." So, with that much of an incentive, the fool ERWIN, goes gets his Brautwurst cut off, and comes back to Deutschland as Elvira, much to the dismay of Elvira's wife and daughter. AND, the man he/she loved, STILL wanted nothing to do with him. HAHA, a joke of a ruined life followed, and Fassbinder reveals with sharp focus all the gory details. The famous scene in this movie, was when ELVIRA is walking thru a meat processing plant, and remineses about having once been a butcher, while cows are being killed, and cut apart around him. Sehr merkwuerdig, mein Freund. The tragic overtones that come into play have something to do with Fassbinder's personal life : His lover commited suicide just weeks before this film was made. The other film is MARTHA, a character study of a woman who is submissive to the point of bathos, and the expectant tragic consiquences ensue. Martha is a 30ish spinster and professional librarian, who lives at home and is dominated by her mother. She then falls into the hands of a man who is the one of the most sadistic characters in Fassenbender's long line of sadistic characters. Yet in the midst of this depressing pity party, is a bit of comedy, of the dark and twisted type. The ending seems to be exactly what Martha has doomed herself with: total control by others, with a constant source of self pity supplied to Martha by her self bound circumstances. Martha is happy to live a life of misery and total controll. Well, there you go. Both films are odd, by any standard ,and I cant really think of too many other films with character protrayals of self inflicted destruction like these. So, for one low price, enjoy two fantastic Fassbinder classics, a cool feature length documentary, and tons of interviews and extras/commentaries to boot. The actual artwork for both films are inside the case, BTW, so don't think you are not going to get the artwork for the films, when you see the double DVD case with Fassbinder's mug on the outside. In fact, inside the case are 2 little booklets, one for each film, with more info, extra photos, and nice liner notes in English. (Most of the DVD documentary is in english too, as i remember.) For cinema buffs, this would be a treat, but for Fassbinder fans, I can easily say, both of these films are NESSACARY for a basic collection."
Excellent starting place
Stalwart Kreinblaster | Xanadu | 07/25/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This set would probably be the best introduction to Fassbinder's films that you can find. 'Martha' represents the quintessential Fassbinder melodrama.. Margret Carstensen's desperate performance as a tortured wife is unforgettable.. 'In a Year with 13 Moons' is among the director's best works - it is a transitional film in his catalog it brings together the experimentation of his early years with the scope of his later hollywood-like (tongue in cheek hollywood) films..
This would be my choice for an affordable introduction to Fassbinder."