Despair (Despair - Eine Reise ins Licht) Reviews

  • Robert B Super Reviewer
    Sep 30, 2015

    Despair is a fun and absurd feature. The filmmaking is reminiscent of Bunuel, especially the upfront symbolic imagery, yet the style is distinctly playful, both camera work and acting.

    Despair is a fun and absurd feature. The filmmaking is reminiscent of Bunuel, especially the upfront symbolic imagery, yet the style is distinctly playful, both camera work and acting.

  • Nov 27, 2014

    I would have met Fassbinder to congrats to him

    I would have met Fassbinder to congrats to him

  • Sep 24, 2014

    I wish I had watched a double of this movie instead, one that wasn't so metaphysical or psychological. A poor imposter for criticism of the bourgeoisie, capitalism, nazism/fascism.

    I wish I had watched a double of this movie instead, one that wasn't so metaphysical or psychological. A poor imposter for criticism of the bourgeoisie, capitalism, nazism/fascism.

  • Jan 17, 2014

    Surrealistic adaptation of Nabokov's is both experimental and oddly poised. From a highly cerebral Stoppard script, Fassbinder propels his film forward using the unsettling staging of his actors and the lushly beautiful work of cinematographer, Michael Ballhaus. The cinematic metaphor is rather clunky, but effective. As the Nazis assume power over Germany a successful chocolate maker begins to slip into existential delusions and the film slips into a mix of psychodrama and film noir. Somehow this experiment works. Dirk Bogarde is especially effective in the lead role. I had read a great deal about this film over the years and agree that DESPAIR was a departure for Fassbinder, but it is firmly rooted in what I would call Fassbinderian Language.

    Surrealistic adaptation of Nabokov's is both experimental and oddly poised. From a highly cerebral Stoppard script, Fassbinder propels his film forward using the unsettling staging of his actors and the lushly beautiful work of cinematographer, Michael Ballhaus. The cinematic metaphor is rather clunky, but effective. As the Nazis assume power over Germany a successful chocolate maker begins to slip into existential delusions and the film slips into a mix of psychodrama and film noir. Somehow this experiment works. Dirk Bogarde is especially effective in the lead role. I had read a great deal about this film over the years and agree that DESPAIR was a departure for Fassbinder, but it is firmly rooted in what I would call Fassbinderian Language.

  • Carlos M Super Reviewer
    Aug 18, 2013

    As Fassbinder's first film in English, this psychedelic drama may have an intriguing story but the direction is heavy-handed and lacks that conviction found in his earlier works. Especially the tone he adopts seems incompatible with the kind of story he wants to tell.

    As Fassbinder's first film in English, this psychedelic drama may have an intriguing story but the direction is heavy-handed and lacks that conviction found in his earlier works. Especially the tone he adopts seems incompatible with the kind of story he wants to tell.

  • Jan 17, 2013

    "Cinema is just a form of masturbation. Sexual relief for disappointed people. Women write and say, "I let my husband do it because I think it's you lying on top of me"--Dirk Bogarde I've been wanting to see this for years & it was worth the wait. Great script & exceptional acting by the irresistibly sexy Bogarde. A Fassbinder classic.

    "Cinema is just a form of masturbation. Sexual relief for disappointed people. Women write and say, "I let my husband do it because I think it's you lying on top of me"--Dirk Bogarde I've been wanting to see this for years & it was worth the wait. Great script & exceptional acting by the irresistibly sexy Bogarde. A Fassbinder classic.

  • Jul 10, 2012

    An odd campy film - with a less than surprising end.

    An odd campy film - with a less than surprising end.

  • Mar 08, 2012

    it's both bold and beautiful to look at, but suffers from obfuscation -- perhaps becuase it's in English rather than German.

    it's both bold and beautiful to look at, but suffers from obfuscation -- perhaps becuase it's in English rather than German.

  • Feb 09, 2012

    For first-time Fassbinder watchers.

    For first-time Fassbinder watchers.

  • Stefanie C Super Reviewer
    Jun 12, 2011

    Personally, I think this is one of Bogarde's finest roles.

    Personally, I think this is one of Bogarde's finest roles.