Katzelmacher

"Excellent"

Katzelmacher Review


Not much happens in Fassbinder's Katzelmacher (the title translates as Cock Artist), at least not until Fassbinder himself shows up to throw a wrench into things.

Those things are the empty lives of a group of Munich city-dwellers, a bunch of men and women roughly in their 30s who do nothing but sit on the sidewalk, smoke, and have sex with one another all day long. Fassbinder's Greek immigrant Jorgos mucks up the status quo when he moves in and takes up with one of the German women (Hanna Schygulla), throwing their slacker lifestyle out of its precarious balance. The local Germs do what any territory-protecting brood would do: They beat the crap out of him.

That's about the sum total of Katzelmacher, a (mostly) quiet film that erupts into violence and cryptic eroticism, much like his later effort The Merchant of Four Seasons. Aside from an obvious metaphor for xenophobia, the movie doesn't tell us much about anything. In typical Fassbinder fashion, he leaves the interpretation for you -- whether you're to scorn or embrace the lives of these Teutonic slackers (20 years ahead of their time, by the way), it's for you to decide on your own. That Fassbinder once again casts himself in the role of the underdog may or may not weigh on that decision.

Shot with the bare minimum of set design (in depressing black and white, of course), virtually no cutting within scenes, and photographed from afar, Katzelmacher is a minimalist work of art. It doesn't reach the level of despair of some of Fassbinder's other works, but the artistry is unquestionable.

The new DVD features a cleaned-up transfer and subtitles along with filmographies of cast and crew.



Facts and Figures

Run time: 88 mins

In Theaters: Saturday 22nd November 1969

Distributed by: Wellspring Media Inc.

Production compaines: Antiteater-X-Film

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 4 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 100%
Fresh: 10

IMDB: 7.1 / 10

Cast & Crew

Starring: as Marie, as Jorgos, Hans Hirschmüller as Erich, as Helga, as Paul, as Rosy, as Franz, as Elisabeth, as Peter, as Gunda, as Frau mit Cabrio

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

Colossal Movie Review

Colossal Movie Review

It's rare to find a movie that so defiantly refuses to be put into a...

King Arthur: Legend of the Sword Movie Review

King Arthur: Legend of the Sword Movie Review

It's unlikely that Guy Ritchie could make a boring movie if he wanted to. This...

Snatched Movie Review

Snatched Movie Review

It doesn't really matter that the script for this lively action-comedy is paper thin: teaming...

Jawbone Movie Review

Jawbone Movie Review

Boxing movies aren't usually this thoughtful. Sure, there are plenty of punchy moments in the...

Whisky Galore! Movie Review

Whisky Galore! Movie Review

Scottish filmmaker Gillies MacKinnon (Hideous Kinky) remakes the 1949 Ealing comedy classic, although it's difficult...

Alien: Covenant Movie Review

Alien: Covenant Movie Review

Master filmmaker Ridley Scott is back to continue the story 10 years after the events...

The Journey (2017) Movie Review

The Journey (2017) Movie Review

A fictionalised account of real events, this drama is reminiscent of Peter Morgan's work in...

Advertisement
Sleepless Movie Review

Sleepless Movie Review

In remaking the 2011 French thriller Sleepless Night, the filmmakers have dumbed down both the...

Unlocked Movie Review

Unlocked Movie Review

By injecting a steady sense of fun, this slick but mindless action thriller both holds...

Lady Macbeth Movie Review

Lady Macbeth Movie Review

A seriously impressive feature directing debut with a star-making central performance, this period British drama...

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 Movie Review

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 Movie Review

It was never going to be easy to match the impact of 2014's Guardians of...

The Promise Movie Review

The Promise Movie Review

The director of Hotel Rwanda, Terry George, turns to another humanitarian horror: the systematic murder...

Their Finest Movie Review

Their Finest Movie Review

Skilfully written, directed and acted, this offbeat British period film tells a story that catches...

Unforgettable Movie Review

Unforgettable Movie Review

With heavy echoes of trashy thrillers like Fatal Attraction, this movie overcomes its painfully simplistic...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.