Chinese Roulette

RAINER WERNER FASSBINDER

Bil’s rating (out of 5):  BBB.5. 

Original title:  Chinesisches Roulette

West Germany/France, 1976.  , .  Screenplay by Rainer Werner Fassbinder.  Cinematography by .  Produced by , .  Music by . Production Design by , , .  Film Editing by .  Toronto International Film Festival 1976.  

A little girl suffering from a physical disability manipulates both her parents and their respective lovers to a chateau for a weekend of warped head games in this darkly comedic film by Rainer Werner Fassbinder. The young lady is a bit disappointed when revealing her parents’ infidelities to each other proves not to be as eruptive as she’d hoped, but that doesn’t stop her from pushing her luck as far as she possibly can. The climax is when she engages all the guests of the house, including two extra visitors and the family maid ( of Ali: Fear Eats The Soul) in a role-playing game that has a cruel element in it that suits her every purpose. There are many delights to this German oddity, the most notable being a great performance by as the father’s mistress, while (a frequent star of Fassbinder’s films) is terrific as the mother.

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