Fear Eats the Soul

Fear Eats the Soul

Rainer Werner Fassbinder (1973)

12A Certificate


Our Score
Inspired by Douglas Sirk's All That Heaven Allows (1955), this affecting film from director Rainer Werner Fassbinder uses an unconventional love story to attack the prejudices inherent in German society in the early 1970s. As the widowed cleaner and the Moroccan mechanic whose cross-cultural, age-gap romance is frowned upon by their family and friends, Brigitte Mira and El Hedi Ben Salem are so convincing it's easy to forget they are merely playing roles. Fassbinder also impresses as Mira's loathsome son-in-law, but it's the stylised realism and deceptive simplicity of his direction that elevates this incisive drama above the more popular period pieces of his later career.


A lonely, ageing German cleaning woman falls in love with a much younger Arab man, to the horror of both their families and friends. As time goes on, the people who rejected them seek to make amends for selfish reasons, but the couple are already starting to question the strength of their relationship. Rainer Werner Fassbinder's drama, starring Brigitte Mira and El Hedi Ben Salem. In German.

Cast & Crew

Emmi Brigitte Mira
Ali El Hedi Ben Salem
Barbara Barbara Valentin
Krista Irm Hermann
Bruno Peter Gauhe
Albert Karl Scheydt
Eugen Rainer Werner Fassbinder
Mrs Kargus Elma Korlowa
Mrs Ellis Anita Bucher
Paula Gusti Kreissl
Director Rainer Werner Fassbinder
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Other Information

Language: German, Arabic +subtitlesColourTheatrical distributor: Arrow FilmsGuidance: Contains swearing and nudity.Available on: video and DVDReleased on: 31 Mar 2017