Baal Film Still

Baal

Volker Schlöndorff

 
Baal (Criterion Blu-Ray)

20 Mar 2018

Blu-Ray

1 Disc

SRP: $39.95

Criterion Store price:$31.96

  • West Germany
  • 1970
  • 84 minutes
  • Color
  • 1.37:1
  • German
  •  
  • Spine #914

Volker Schlöndorff transported Bertolt Brecht’s 1918 debut play to contemporary West Germany for this vicious experiment in adaptation, seldom seen for nearly half a century. Oozing with brutish charisma, Rainer Werner Fassbinder embodies the eponymous anarchist poet, who feels that bourgeois society has rejected him and sets off on a schnapps-soaked rampage. Hewing faithfully to Brecht’s text, Schlöndorff juxtaposes the theatricality of the prose with bare-bones, handheld 16 mm camera work, which gives immediacy to this savage story of rebellion. Featuring a supporting cast drawn from Fassbinder’s troupe of theater actors that also includes Margarethe von Trotta, Baal demonstrates the uncompromising vision of its director, a trailblazer of the New German Cinema.

Disc Features

DIRECTOR-APPROVED SPECIAL EDITION:

  • New 2K digital restoration, supervised by director Volker Schlöndorff, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray
  • Interviews from 1973 and 2015 with Schlöndorff
  • New conversation between actor Ethan Hawke and playwright Jonathan Marc Sherman about the play and adaptation
  • New interview with actor and filmmaker Margarethe von Trotta
  • New interview with film historian Eric Rentschler
  • New English subtitle translation
  • PLUS: An essay by critic Dennis Lim

    New cover by Rainer Fetting

Film Essays

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Baal: The Nature of the Beast

By Dennis Lim March 20, 2018

The careers of three iconic German artists—Bertolt Brecht, Rainer Werner Fassbinder, and Volker Schlöndorff—converged in this unflinching portrait of destructive genius. Read more »

Photo Galleries

10 Things I Learned: Baal

By Jason Altman March 29, 2018


Video

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Fassbinder’s Anarchic Spin on a Classic Brecht Role

March 27, 2018

New German Cinema filmmaker Margarethe von Trotta shares her memories of working with Rainer Werner Fassbinder on the set of Volker Schlöndorf’s 1970 film Baal. Read more »


Video

Ethan_thumbnail

Ethan Hawke and Jonathan Marc Sherman’s Closet Picks

March 22, 2018

Longtime friends and collaborators Ethan Hawke and Jonathan Marc Sherman, who stopped by last year to contribute to our new edition of Baal, took a trip into our closet to pick up some favorite . . . Read more »


Film Essays

Current_29060id_025_thumbnail

Baal: The Nature of the Beast

By Dennis Lim March 20, 2018

The careers of three iconic German artists—Bertolt Brecht, Rainer Werner Fassbinder, and Volker Schlöndorff—converged in this unflinching portrait of destructive genius. Read more »

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