The Bitter Tears of Petra von Kant ★★★½

A fitting watch on Independence Day with a languidly intense tale of relations. Perhaps unhealthy ones, but you get the feeling there is no other kind. The life cycle of relationships with fluid power structures and just different perspectives giving different meaning to them shows the simple complexity that never quite allows you to know a person. Or perhaps more importantly in general, to judge them. This is a really harsh story but offers sympathy for the worst characters.

The babbly chamber play appears to be made for the stage, but Fassbinder does everything to make it a movie. Different angles and active blocking turn the little room into a dynamic location that keeps the eye busy. This despite the most chilled out actual movement of the characters or the camera. The most dramatic action is for someone to stop typing on a typewriter or someone slowly dancing while the other holds a monologue. This hypnotic rhythm sucks you in until the jagged characters have grown on you.