Cinema: Doubled Up

DESPAIR

Directed by Rainer Werner Fassbinder Screenplay by Tom Stoppard

It is quite possible to attend Despair in the wrong frame of mind, having worked one's emotions into shape for piano moving, so to speak, only to find that there is nothing heavier than a seltzer bottle or a nightgown being lifted. Despair is, in fact, a light and lavender comedy about a crazed Russian émigré named Hermann Hermann, who watches in amazement as his mind splits like his name, into two equal parts. The film is set in Berlin. Based on a 1936 novel...

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