[Only] someone like Fassbinder, a man who solemnly proclaimed a film with an all-woman cast "strictly autobiographical" could make The Marriage of Maria Braun.
Maria builds her life around her love for Hermann, in spite of their separation. Regardless of whether or not her love is "real," it is the passion that sustains her. It is also the carrot that Fassbinder dangles before Maria as he enmeshes her in a web of complications. As the reality of a reunion with her husband is repeatedly denied, Maria's love becomes an abstraction that retreats further and further into fantasy. (pp. 40-1)
Control is the key to Maria. She is always completely in command. But she can't have the...
(The entire section is 735 words.)