Reading Rainer Fassbinder’s adaptation Fontane Effi Briest

Cultura 13 (2):83-102 (2016)
Abstract
Fontane Effi Briest by the German director Rainer Werner Fassbinder is arguably one of the greatest adaptations from literature to screen, and the best Effi Briest adaptation. Although the first reception of the movie, when it appeared in 1974, was not without unmixed reviews, most scholars nowadays share the conviction that it is a masterpiece. Elke Siegel defines the film as a success both at the Berlinale and at the box office. Kreft Wetzel, however, in an interview with Fassbinder in 1974, refers to the ambivalent attitude of the critics abroad at the time of the movie‘s release, to which Fassbinder replies that Fontane‘s language is the foundation of the movie and, hence, the film works to its full extent only in German. Forty years after this interview and judging from the scholarly work carried out on Fassbinder in general and Fontane Effi Briest in particular, it is plausible to claim that Fassbinder‘s art has moved beyond the language barriers and appeals to an audience beyond the German culture and language.
Keywords Contemporary Philosophy  Language and Literature  Semiotics  Social Science
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ISBN(s) 1584-1057  
DOI 10.5840/cultura201613218
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