Angst Essen Seele auf (Ali: Fear Eats the Soul) 1974

Ali: Fear Eats the Soul

Critics Consensus

Regarded as one of the high-water marks in German New Wave cinema of the 1970s, Ali: Fear Eats the Soul is at once an intense portrayal of a relationship and a tribute to one of Rainer Werner Fassbinder's film heroes, Douglas Sirk.

100%

TOMATOMETER

Total Count: 36

91%

Audience Score

User Ratings: 6,444

Where to watch

Rate And Review

User image

Verified

  • User image

    Super Reviewer

    Rate this movie

    Oof, that was Rotten.

    Meh, it passed the time.

    It’s good – I’d recommend it.

    Awesome!

    So Fresh: Absolute Must See!

    What did you think of the movie? (optional)



  • You're almost there! Just confirm how you got your ticket.

  • User image

    Super Reviewer

    Step 2 of 2

    How did you buy your ticket?

    Let's get your review verified.

    • Fandango

    • AMCTheatres.com or AMC AppNew

    • Cinemark Coming Soon

      We won’t be able to verify your ticket today, but it’s great to know for the future.

    • Regal Coming Soon

      We won’t be able to verify your ticket today, but it’s great to know for the future.

    • Theater box office or somewhere else

    You're almost there! Just confirm how you got your ticket.

  • User image

    Super Reviewer

    Rate this movie

    Oof, that was Rotten.

    Meh, it passed the time.

    It’s good – I’d recommend it.

    Awesome!

    So Fresh: Absolute Must See!

    What did you think of the movie? (optional)

  • How did you buy your ticket?

    • Fandango

    • AMCTheatres.com or AMC AppNew

    • Cinemark Coming Soon

      We won’t be able to verify your ticket today, but it’s great to know for the future.

    • Regal Coming Soon

      We won’t be able to verify your ticket today, but it’s great to know for the future.

    • Theater box office or somewhere else

Ali: Fear Eats the Soul Photos

Movie Info

Emmi Kurowski (Brigitte Mira), a cleaning lady, is lonely in her old age. Her husband died years ago, and her grown children offer little companionship. One night she goes to a bar frequented by Arab immigrants and strikes up a friendship with middle-aged mechanic Ali (El Hedi ben Salem). Their relationship soon develops into something more, and Emmi's family and neighbors criticize their spontaneous marriage. Soon Emmi and Ali are forced to confront their own insecurities about their future.

Cast & Crew

Brigitte Mira
Emmi Kurowski
Karl Scheydt
Albert Kurowski
Jürgen Jürges
Cinematographer
Thea Eymèsz
Film Editor
Helga Kempke
Makeup Artist
Christian Hohoff
Production Manager
Rainer Langhans
Assistant Director
Show all Cast & Crew

Critic Reviews for Angst Essen Seele auf (Ali: Fear Eats the Soul)

All Critics (36) | Top Critics (9) | Fresh (36)

  • The performances of Brigitte Mira and El Hedi Ben Salem as Emmi and Ali are superb; they act with instant sympathy and charm and in their own way, they are the most purely lovable characters I have ever seen on a movie screen.

    March 30, 2017 | Rating: 5/5 | Full Review…
  • Fassbinder made so many incredible films, but this is certainly up there with his finest.

    March 30, 2017 | Rating: 5/5 | Full Review…
  • One of the most beautiful films ever made, plain and simple.

    March 27, 2017 | Rating: 5/5 | Full Review…
  • Fassbinder's historicism is a crucial aspect of his modernism: he didn't just make use of prior forms, he quoted them, and derived from them the ironies implicit in his melodramatic styles.

    June 3, 2014 | Full Review…
  • This 1974 film stands as one of Fassbinder's sturdiest achievements, posed between the low-budget funkiness of his early features and the mannerism of his late period.

    May 25, 2011 | Full Review…
  • Technically flawless, deceptively simple and avoiding excesses, it is about problems that are timely and timeless in implications.

    June 26, 2008 | Full Review…

    Variety Staff

    Variety
    Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Angst Essen Seele auf (Ali: Fear Eats the Soul)

  • Aug 08, 2013
    A delicate and deeply resonant melodrama like only Fassbinder could have made, telling with plenty of honesty a simple but objective love story centered on revolting matters like prejudice and racism - problems relevant even today when it comes to immigrants in Europe.
    Carlos M Super Reviewer
  • Mar 10, 2013
    This is my introduction to Fassibender and I will be watching more of his films. Ali: Fear Eats the Soul revolves around a romance between an elderly widow and an Arab foreign worker. It's filmed and set in Germany. Much like interracial marriages were looked at in the US it was frowned upon. The story is simplistic, the film never moves out of a realistic view point. While the ideas were depressing I never actually felt any emotion. I don't know why, the acting was genuine enough, and the story had me gripped. Even during the family meeting I didn't feel anything, emotionally I wasn't present. While I liked what the ending thirty minutes did, I don't think it was executed perfectly. It was to sudden, I wouldn't have minded an additional thirty minutes of footage to make it more evened out. This is still a phenomenal film considering how little it revolves around. Tension was always boiling, and the story had me gripped. You don't have to be adventurous to enjoy this, so I recommend it to everyone. 3.5 stars+
    Daniel D Super Reviewer
  • Apr 03, 2012
    Aesthetically amazing. The cinematography makes it interesting to watch and the performances of Ali and Emma are perfect. The film is devoid of any contrived or melodramatic emotion. It moves forward calmly. The ending is a little hard to absorb because it ends oddly, but that is in touch with the rest of the film. Fassbinder alienates and yet manipulates the viewer's emotion extremely well. Astonishing how much subtext is in the film, I was watching something and thinking about it at the same time throughout the entire film. Strange and raw film which comments on racism but in a very organic and effective manner.
    G S Super Reviewer
  • Oct 18, 2011
    For sure in my all time top 5. The first time I watched this I was glued to the screen. It totally took me by surprise. The scene where Fassbinder cameos as the son-in-law objecting to the relationship is perfect.
    Graham J Super Reviewer

Angst Essen Seele auf (Ali: Fear Eats the Soul) Quotes

There are no approved quotes yet for this movie.

Movie & TV guides