Die Bitteren Tršnen der Petra von Kant (The Bitter Tears of Petra Von Kant)
Die Bitteren Tršnen der Petra von Kant (The Bitter Tears of Petra Von Kant) (1972)

This tale of intermingled love and hate is directed by Rainer Werner Fassbinder, and is the 13th of the 33 films he made in his short life. It explores the universal dynamics present in close human relationships, even lesbian ones. Petra… More

Rated: R
Running Time:
Release Date: October 5, 1972
DVD Release Date: March 29, 2005
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Critic Score: 86% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews
Tony Rayns
Time Out

The set and costume design and the hothouse atmosphere represent so much high-camp gloss; but once again this careful stylisation enables Fassbinder to balance between parody of an emotional stance and intense commitment to it.

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Philip Concannon
The Skinny

Fassbinder's acute understanding of human desire and pain ensures a strange, haunting tension throughout.

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Sean Axmaker
Parallax View

Handsome with a touch of aloofness... it's a quintessentially Fassbinder portrait of doomed love, jealousy, and social taboos, bouncing between catty melodrama and naked emotional need.

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Nora Sayre
New York Times

Even those who love pain will be frustrated by The Bitter Tears of Petra von Kant.

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Kenneth Robinson
The Spectator

Like so many films these days, this one turns out to be more interesting when you get away and think about it.

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Eric Melin

On one level, it is an engrossing character study about changing power dynamics in relationships. On another, it's simply a marvel of fluid, focused filmmaking - where everything in the frame is loaded with meaning.

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Dave Kehr
Chicago Reader

Rainer Werner Fassbinder's most harshly stylized and perhaps most significant film.

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Cole Smithey

[VIDEO ESSAY] Brecht meets Douglas Sirk and Joseph Mankiewicz ("All About Eve") in Rainer Werner Fassbinder's delectable adaptation of his five-act stageplay, a lesbian triangle of role- switching polarities between dominance and submission.

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Christopher Long
Movie Metropolis

You can understand why (Petra Von Kant) is viewed by many as one of Fassbinder's masterpieces. Not bad for ten days' work, anyway.

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Flixster Audience Score: 85% Flixster User Reviews
Carlos Magalh„es
A very sharp, thought-provoking and also superbly directed story conceived within a perfect 4-act-and-an-epilogue structure and having only a room as stage to… More
Ivan Descartin
My second Fassbinder film, "The Bitter Tears of Petra von Kant" has caught me off-guard on how insightful its screenplay really is in terms of… More
Matheus Carvalho
It's incredible how Fassbinder was able to expertly use one single set and frame it in all ways possible to please his deliciously black humour in order to… More
Anastasia Bartzoulianou
A superb lesson on composition and symbolism, this film by Fassbinder is an essay on human relationships, lust and love. Shot in a single room with a cast of… More
Eric Broome
"The Bitter Tears of Petra Von Kant" may be dull, but it's a tribute to director R.W. Fassbinder's mise en scene that it's not even… More