Fontane Effi Briest
Fontane Effi Briest (1974)

Rainer Werner Fassbinder's adaptation of a late 19th-century novel by Theodor Fontane is an austere period piece that may be the least characteristic of the German director's films. The titular heroine, played by Fassbinder regular… More

Rated: Unrated
Running Time:
Release Date: March 11, 2003
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Rotten Tomatoes™
Critic Score
75%
Flixster
User Score
71%


Critic Score: 75% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews
Vincent Canby
New York Times

It's visually beguiling -- its cameramen having found shades of gray between black and white I'm not sure I've seen before -- and it is performed by the Fassbinder stock company with the precision and style one seldom finds outside the legitimate theater.

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Donald J. Levit
ReelTalk Movie Reviews

In spite of achieved small-budget period flavor, the film is ponderously top-heavy in its setting up and complication.

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Christopher Null
Filmcritic.com

It's Fassbinder's arm's-length direction that makes Effi Briest come off as cold and detached instead of calculating and sad.

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Dave Kehr
Chicago Reader

The slow, deliberate pace is sometimes taxing, but this story of a 16-year-old girl locked in the boredom of a loveless marriage is perfectly suited to Fassbinder's stifling mise-en-scene.

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TV Guide's Movie Guide

One of the finest films to come out of postwar Germany.

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Dennis Schwartz
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

Compelling viewing for the delicate way it unfolds and leaves a tingling feeling there's a lot more going on than it seems.

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Matt Bailey
Not Coming to a Theater Near You

The film demonstrates not only Fassbinder's usual superb technical control and ability to elicit superbly nuanced performances from his actors, but also an unprecedented affinity for literary adaptation and historical sensitivity.

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More reviews for Fontane Effi Briest

Flixster Audience Score: 71% Flixster User Reviews
Carlos Magalhães
Fassbinder directs this period piece with an impressive technical preciosity, something evident in the exquisite mise-en-scène and cinematography. And he finds… More
John Ballantine
My readers know that I am not usually a fan of period pieces but this one works well.