Browse Archive

Berlin Alexanderplatz (14 Parts) (Berlin Alexanderplatz (14 Teile))

Franz Biberkopf is an unforgettable man: good-natured, soft, tender, but also hard, violent, and brutal. He wanders through the Berlin of the late 1920s without perspectives, goals, or work. All that keeps him going is the belief that human beings are good, no matter how rotten they are. The story begins when Franz Biberkopf leaves Tegel prison after serving four years for manslaughter. Drifting about Berlin, he decides to start a new life. He has a few people he can count on: his ex-girlfriend Eva, now working as a high-class prostitute, as well as the down-to-earth innkeeper and his wife. But no one finds work for him. Feeling superfluous, unwanted and unloved, he crawls away and drinks ...

Weeks later, he gets up, dusts himself off and plans to show the world that it hasn´t gotten the better of Franz Biberkopf. Then he meets Reinhold, a fascinating, mysterious character, a pimp and a criminal, maybe even a demon ... All Franz knows is that he´s magically drawn to Reinhold and is ready to trust him entirely, even if this means breaking the law again. Things go wrong; Franz loses both an arm and Reinhold´s friendship. But then he wins something much more important: the love of Mieze, sweet, gentle Mieze who walks the streets just for him! But Reinhold still lurks in the shadows. He wants revenge. He wants Mieze. He kills Mieze. Franz has lost the only thing that kept him alive. Now it´s lights out for Franz Biberkopf.

With a running time of approximately 15 hours, Berlin Alexanderplatz is a monument of late 20th-century filmmaking and is seen by many as the consummate expression of film giant Rainer Werner Fassbinder´s vision of humanity. Produced in 1980, it has now been restored in digital format by Bavaria Media, the Rainer Werner Fassbinder Foundation and other sponsors.

Rainer Werner Fassbinder was born in 1945 and died in 1982. He was one of the most significant directors of the “New German Cinema”. In just 13 years, between 1969 and 1982, he made 44 films, including Katzelmacher (1969), The Merchant of Four Seasons (Der Haendler der vier Jahreszeiten, 1971), The Bitter Tears of Petra von Kant (Die bitteren Traenen der Petra von Kant, 1972), Fear Eats the Soul (Angst essen Seele auf, 1973), Fontane Effi Briest (1974), Despair (1978), The Marriage of Maria Braun (Die Ehe der Maria Braun, 1979), Berlin Alexanderplatz (1980), Lili Marleen (1981), Lola (1981), and Querelle (1982), among others. He wrote 14 plays, revised six others and directed 25. He wrote four radio plays and 37 screenplays and worked on a further 13 scripts with other writers. Fassbinder's films are among the most valid social documents produced between the late 60s and early 80s in Germany; his plays are among the most performed of any post-war German dramatist.
Genre Drama
Category Feature
Year of Production 1980
Director Rainer Werner Fassbinder
Screenplay Rainer Werner Fassbinder
Cinematography Xaver Schwarzenberger
Juliane Lorenz
Peer Raben
Werner Achmann, Helmut Gassner
Cast Gottfried John, Brigitte Mira, Roger Fritz, Karin Baal, Annemarie Dueringer, Elisabeth Trissenaar, Helen Vita, Barbara Valentin, Barbara Sukowa, Hanna Schygulla, Günter Lamprecht, Ivan Desny
Producer Peter Maerthesheimer
Production Company Bavaria Film, in cooperation with Rainer Werner Fassbinder Werkschau/Berlin
Length 869 min
Format 16 mm, color
Original Version
Subtitled Versions English, French, Spanish
Festivals Venice 1980, Berlin 2007 (Special Presentation: Remastered Version), Edinburgh 2007 (Special Event: Remastered Version), Sao Paulo 2008
Awards Special Mention OCIC Jury Venice 1980, Adolf Grimme Award 1981

World Sales
Bavaria Media International

click here