When we first released Rainer Werner Fassbinder’s Ali: Fear Eats the Soul in 2003, we asked filmmaker Todd Haynes to provide a video introduction. The year before, he had released his masterful Far from Heaven, a reworking of Douglas Sirk’s All That Heaven Allows (1955), the film that also provided the inspiration for Fassbinder’s wrenching melodrama about the societally frowned-upon love between a middle-aged cleaning woman and a younger Moroccan immigrant. Haynes brought his amazing insight about cinema and people to his discussion of Ali—as is clear from this excerpt, in which he focuses on a particular composition and how it expresses the film’s themes.
Digging Through Movie History at Chaplin’s Studios
Film scholar Craig Barron gives us a tour of the studios on whose back lot Charlie Chaplin built the set for his final film of the silent era, The Circus.
Career Women in the Land of Lubitsch
Critics Molly Haskell and Farran Smith Nehme talk about the highly idiosyncratic heroines who populate Ernst Lubitsch’s comedies, including the protagonist of his final film, Cluny Brown.
Ritwik Ghatak’s Pursuit of Truth Beyond Realism
Acclaimed Indian filmmakers Saeed Akhtar Mirza and Kumar Shahani discuss how the Bengali master mixed expressionism and naturalism in his devastating domestic tragedy The Cloud-Capped Star.