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aka - Faustrecht der Freiheit
Germany 1975
Directed by
Rainer Werner Fassbinder
123 minutes
Rated MA

2.5 stars

Fox And His Friends

Written by Fassbinder, Fox And His Friends is a potentially powerful story of a good-natured homosexual circus worker (Fassbinder) who wins the lottery and a new lover (Peter Chatel) and over a two year is fleeced of his fortune by the latter who uses Fox to finance his lavishly pretentious lifestyle.
Fox’s tragic story, which apparently was motivated in part by Fassbinder's relationship with Armin Meier, who starred in seven of the director's films before killing himself in 1978 shortly after their break-up, has a good deal of immediacy. Unfortunately the director's realization is not as good as the story, with Fassbinder, who was not an particularly good actor, mis-cast in the lead role and indeed the narrative as a whole proceeding too mechanically with no dramatic conviction in the performances. As is so often is the case with Fassbinder, the director’s unrestrained penchant for applying the conventions of Sirkian melodrama, but shorn of the lush production values with gave them their original meaning, undercuts the emotional impact of his story, which to some extent is mis-used as a stylistic pre-text. 

DVD Extras: A feature-length documentary on Fassbinder, I Don’t Just Want You To Love Me; audio commentary by Dr. Hamish Ford, Lecturer in Film Studies at Newcastle University; Not-So-Discreet “Harm” of the Bourgeoisie: R.W. Fassbinder’s Fox and His Friends; an essay by Peter Kemp, Lecturer in Film Studies at RMIT University.

Available from Madman as part of a 3 disc release Fassbinder On Sex, that also includes The Bitter Tears Of Petra von Kant and In A Year With 13 Moons.

Available from: Madman




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