Angst Essen Seele auf (Ali: Fear Eats the Soul)
Angst Essen Seele auf (Ali: Fear Eats the Soul) (1974)

Rainer Werner Fassbinder not only directed Ali: Fear Eats the Soul (Angst essen Seele auf), but also scripted the film, designed the sets, and produced. Brigitte Mira heads the cast as a lonely German cleaning woman, who enters into an… More

Rated: Unrated
Running Time:
Genre: Drama
Release Date: June 10, 2003
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Critic Score: 100% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews

Consensus: Regarded as one of the high-water marks in German New Wave cinema of the 1970s, Ali: Fear Eats the Soul is at once an intense portrayal of a relationship and a tribute to one of Rainer Werner Fassbinder's film heroes, Douglas Sirk.

Richard Brody
New Yorker

Fassbinder's historicism is a crucial aspect of his modernism: he didn't just make use of prior forms, he quoted them, and derived from them the ironies implicit in his melodramatic styles.

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Nigel Floyd
Time Out

Fassbinder uses dramatic and visual excess to push everyday events to extremes, achieving a degree of political and psychological truth not accessible through mere social realism.

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Duncan Fallowell
The Spectator

This is Fassbinder's first public showing in this country and it will not be the last; [he's] a highly skilled German director not yet thirty who also wrote the screenplay and indeed the theme music.

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Dave Kehr
Chicago Reader

This 1974 film stands as one of Fassbinder's sturdiest achievements, posed between the low-budget funkiness of his early features and the mannerism of his late period.

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Vincent Canby
New York Times

It is, rather, another quite courageous attempt by Mr. Fassbinder to develop a film style free of the kind of realistic conventions that sentimentalize life's mysteries.

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David Stratton
At the Movies (Australia)

[Fassbinder's] framing is immaculate, his themes are powerful, and the performances are great.

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Variety Staff

Technically flawless, deceptively simple and avoiding excesses, it is about problems that are timely and timeless in implications.

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Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times

Ali: Fear Eats the Soul might sound like improbable, contrived soap opera. It doesn't play that way.

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David Keyes

The movie operates in passages of such raw and resonating veracity that they seem almost too stark to be in a movie.

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Flixster Audience Score: 90% Flixster User Reviews
Bob Stinson
Very touching movie. Emmi is one of the great screen heroines.
Graham Jones
For sure in my all time top 5. The first time I watched this I was glued to the screen. It totally took me by surprise. The scene where Fassbinder cameos as the… More
Carlos Magalh„es
A delicate and deeply resonant melodrama like only Fassbinder could have made, telling with plenty of honesty a simple but objective love story centered on… More
Reid Volk
Although I can clearly see what Fassbinder was going for, I believe it could have been executed much better. As it is meant to expose the unjust racial… More
Michael S
One of cinema's most unconventional love stories is also one of the most touching and authentic I've ever seen. A simple and sweet little triumph from… More
Stella Dallas
more than 30 years old but it could've happened yesterday. one of the most simple and affecting love stories i've ever seen