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Thursday, 19 February 2015

The 6th Hall Of Fame Inductee Representing Drama Film - Fear Eats The Soul (1974) - Rainer Werner Fassbinder

Inducted alongside the film’s writer-director (and actor) Rainer Werner Fassbinder, Fear Eats The Soul is a remarkably passionate and humane drama. Fassbinder, with real tenderness, contemplates racial tensions, ageism and relationship stigmas. In one of the great cinematic romances, involving sixty-year-old cleaning woman Emmi and Ali, a Moroccan gastarbeiter (guest worker) in his late thirties, Fassbinder tells a story addressing this content but also a complex relationship in it’s own right. There’s such beauty in little moments between the central characters, who, despite their troubles, are absolutely in love with and dedicated to one another. Much as Fassbinder himself, with his compassion towards society’s downtrodden, has to do with this, the central performances are themselves great. Briggite Mira’s Emmi is portrayed with grace, sympathy and understanding, and El Hedi ben Salem, Fassbinder’s then-lover, draws upon his own life’s tragedy, besought with violence and excess, giving an excellently understated performance as Ali. For all the social commentary, the crux at the heart of Fear Eats The Soul is that love is indeed blind.

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