Combustible Celluloid
 
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With: Hanna Schygulla, Harry Baer, Irm Hermann, Rudolf Waldemar Brem, Walter Sedlmayr, Klaus Löwitsch
Written by: Rainer Werner Fassbinder, based on a play by Marieluise Fleisser
Directed by: Rainer Werner Fassbinder
MPAA Rating: Unrated
Language: German with English subtitles
Running Time: 87
Date: 05/19/1971
IMDB

Pioneers in Ingolstadt (1970)

4 Stars (out of 4)

Soldier Blues

By Jeffrey M. Anderson

Like his hero Douglas Sirk, Rainer Werner Fassbinder explored the dark side of human sexuality in Pioneers in Ingolstadt (1970, Fantoma Films, $29.99), the story of a group of soldiers building a bridge in a small town during peacetime. The town's women, including a loose tart (Irm Hermann) and a naïve maid (Hanna Schygulla) begin to flirt with the soldiers, one to have sex, the other to fall in love. The soldiers play with the power of their uniforms and ranks, often making decisions based not on what they themselves want, but on what they don't want others to have. It's a powerful film, shot quickly and economically with incredible cinematic poetry.

DVD Details: Fantoma's transfer is fine, though the film was made for television and is thus not presented in widescreen. The disc also includes a complete Fassbinder filmography.

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