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also known as Heller Wahn

Sheer Madness1985

  • 3.8
  • passes the bechdel test
Director Margarethe von Trotta weaves a wondrously compelling tale of friendship and feminism around the relationship between two seemingly opposite women. Olga is a professor of women's literature, Ruth is a gifted and extremely reticent artist who is desperately fearful of the outside world. From their first meeting they share a warmth and understanding that transcends the outside world. Stunningly acted, SHEER MADNESS may be the most powerful of von Trotta's works to date.

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1 member likes this review

If you're looking for some good German cinema out of Fassbinder or Herzog, you should try Margarethe von Trotta. In this film she portrays a very complex relationship between two women, dynamics of power, feminism, art and poetry, deep emotions, affinity and the excuse of love as a hiding place from the world; full of unexpected spins with a dose of creepiness. Watch it!

Member Reviews (3)

If you're looking for some good German cinema out of Fassbinder or Herzog, you should try Margarethe von Trotta. In this film she portrays a very complex relationship between two women, dynamics of power, feminism, art and poetry, deep emotions, affinity and the excuse of love as a hiding place from the world; full of unexpected spins with a dose of creepiness. Watch it!

1 member likes this review
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top reviewer

Ambitiously as well as successfully ambiguous, von Trotta's writing and direction preserve a shifting element here that is not the vulgar madness of the movie's badly translated title. Sheer is indeed its quality of feeling and thought, yes; but madness is not its medium of action—far, far from it. Surprising, too, the concluding scene wonders the protagonist, Hannah Schygulla, as well its audience. Like a weighty balance, Schygulla's droning rendition of "Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow?" epitomizes the questioning, tenuous, emotive ambience of everything we see in the women's relationship. Fassbinderish in its own way and ways, never more than in that wonderfully, peculiarly sung scene, the movie refuses to settle or resolve into final terms.

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top reviewer

wow i love this film_really powerful a great film for women_the guys except for Christof are assholes_the women are amazing_Ruth & Olga are awesome i love them both_i got so pissed at Franz a selfish bastard_Olga's 'x' is the same_Alexaj didn't like his mommy being free so he left too_it's so well written there are so many great ideas in this film_it's a gem_no kidding