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Encyclopedia > The Marriage of Maria Braun
The Marriage of Maria Braun

The Marriage of Maria Braun DVD cover
Directed by Rainer Werner Fassbinder
Produced by Michael Fengler
Written by Rainer Werner Fassbinder,
Pea Fröhlich,
Peter Märthesheimer
Starring Hanna Schygulla,
Ivan Desny,
Klaus Löwitsch
Distributed by New Yorker Films (USA)
Release date(s) February 20, 1979
Running time 120 minutes
Language German
Budget ~ DEM1,975,000
All Movie Guide profile
IMDb profile

The Marriage of Maria Braun (German title: Die Ehe der Maria Braun) is a 1979 film directed by Rainer Werner Fassbinder. It was nominated for "Best Foreign Film" in the 1980 Golden Globe Awards. The film is the first in Fassbinder's BRD Trilogy, followed by Veronika Voss (BRD 2) and Lola (BRD 3). Image File history File links The_Marriage_of_Maria_Braun_film. ... Rainer Werner Fassbinder (May 31, 1945 – June 10, 1982) was a German movie director, screenwriter and actor, one of the most important representatives of the New German Cinema. ... Rainer Werner Fassbinder (May 31, 1945 – June 10, 1982) was a German movie director, screenwriter and actor, one of the most important representatives of the New German Cinema. ... Hanna Schygulla (born 25 December 1943 in Katowice, Upper Silesia) is a German actress and chanson singer. ... February 20 is the 51st day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar. ... This page refers to the year 1979. ... The Deutsche Mark (DM, DEM) was the official currency of West and, from 1990, unified Germany. ... // Events March 5 - Production begins on Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back. ... Film is a term that encompasses motion pictures as individual projects, as well as the field in general. ... The film director, on the right, gives last minute direction to the cast and crew, whilst filming a costume drama on location in London. ... Rainer Werner Fassbinder (May 31, 1945 – June 10, 1982) was a German movie director, screenwriter and actor, one of the most important representatives of the New German Cinema. ... The Golden Globe Award The Golden Globe Awards are American awards for motion pictures and television programs, given out each year during a formal dinner. ... Criterion Collection cover to The BRD Trilogy The BRD Trilogy consists of three films directed by Rainer Werner Fassbinder: The Marriage of Maria Braun (1979), Veronika Voss (1982), and Lola (1981). ... Veronika Voss (German title: Die Sehnsucht der Veronika Voss) is a 1982 film directed by Rainer Werner Fassbinder. ... DVD cover for BRD Trilogy, a series of three films, including Lola, directed by Rainer Werner Fassbinder Lola is a 1981 film directed by Rainer Werner Fassbinder. ...


The film opens with a close-up of a picture of Adolf Hitler being blown off of a wall during an Allied bombing raid on Berlin in the later stages of World War II. Amidst the chaos, protagonist Maria is married to Hermann Braun in a rushed ceremony where Maria has to run down the official needed to sign their marriage contract. After only "half a day and a whole night" together, Hermann returns to the front. Hitler redirects here. ... Berlin is the capital city and one of the sixteen states of the Federal Republic of Germany. ... Combatants Major Allied powers: United Kingdom Soviet Union United States Republic of China and others Major Axis powers: Nazi Germany Italy Japan and others Commanders Winston Churchill Joseph Stalin Franklin Roosevelt Harry Truman Chiang Kai-Shek Adolf Hitler Benito Mussolini Hideki Tojo Casualties Military dead: 17,000,000 Civilian dead...

After the war ends, Maria and her friend Betti visit the train station where other women go to seek word of their soldier husbands, but Maria's friend's husband returns home with news that Hermann has been killed. The film shows the daily privations and black market commodity exchanges that characterized West Germany in this era; it also shows how debased Germany's proud cultural heritage has become. Fassbinder, in a cameo, uses Beethoven's fifth as a signal to a lookout before he offers Maria the collected works of von Kleist, which she refuses because they burn too quickly; she instead takes a black dress and some liquor. The distraught Maria begins to work in a bar frequented by American soldiers, where she becomes the lover of an African-American soldier whom she calls Mr. Bill; she tells him that she would rather be "brown than black," a reference to his ethnicity, her name, and possibly the Nazi brown shirts. The relationship between the two is tender and loving until Hermann unexpectedly returns home to find Maria and the soldier naked together. During the ensuing scuffle, Maria hits the soldier over the head with a bottle and kills him. 2002 Lincoln cent, obverse, proof with cameo Cameo is a method of carving, or an item of jewelry made in this manner. ... The coversheet to Beethovens 5th Symphony. ... Ewald Christian von Kleist (March 7, 1715 – August 24, 1759) was a German poet and officer. ... Tourists sit outside a bar in Chiang Mai, Thailand A Depression-era bar in Louisiana. ... An African American (also Afro-American, Black American) is a member of an ethnic group in the United States whose ancestors, usually in predominant part, were indigenous to Africa. ... Hitler addressing SA members in the late 1920s The Sturmabteilung (SA, German for Storm Division and is usually translated as stormtroops or stormtroopers) functioned as a paramilitary organisation of the NSDAP – the German Nazi party. ...

Hermann takes the blame for the crime and is sentenced to prison. In the meantime Maria gives birth to Mr. Bill's stillborn baby; it's possible that a family friend, a doctor who has become addicted to morphine, helped to abort the baby. On the way home, she meets a French businessman named Karl Oswald, who fled Germany during the war but is now returning to rebuild his business in the shattered post-war economy. Through the good English that Maria "learned in Bed," she becomes Oswald’s assistant and lover, and a senior manager in his firm, proving herself to be a model of Germany’s recovery. Although she surrounds herself with furs and buys her own home, she grows distant from her family, and threatens her secretary (played by Fassbinder's mother) and her clients for breach of contract. Oswald, who unknown to Maria has a terminal illness, secretly visits Hermann in prison and makes a deal: if, on his release, Hermann stays away from Maria until after Oswald's death, Oswald will leave him his company.

When Hermann is released from jail, he fulfils his promise to Oswald and goes to Canada, sending Maria a rose every week. He returns on Oswald's death, shortly before the Oswald's executor arrives to read the will, and Maria discovers the two men in her life have struck a deal behind her back. The film's final sequence, which includes radio commentary on the 1954 World Cup soccer final, ends abruptly in a gas explosion that presumably kills the couple. The scene is ambiguous as it is unclear whether Maria deliberately leaves the gas stove running, leading to the explosion just as the sports announcer is celebrating West Germany's World Cup victory and shouting "Deutschland ist wieder 'was!" (Germany is something again). The film ends with a series of film negative portraits of West Germany’s post-war chancellors (excluding Willy Brandt). Qualifying countries The 1954 Football World Cup was held in Switzerland. ... Willy Brandt, born Herbert Ernst Karl Frahm (December 18, 1913 - October 8, 1992) was a German politician, Chancellor of West Germany 1969 – 1974, and leader of the Social Democratic Party of Germany (SPD) 1964 – 1987. ...


  • Hanna Schygulla – Maria Braun
  • Klaus Löwitsch – Hermann Braun
  • Ivan Desny – Karl Oswald
  • Gisela Uhlen – Mother
  • Elisabeth Trissenaar – Betti Klenze
  • Gottfried John – Willi Klenze
  • Hark Bohm – Senkenberg

Hanna Schygulla (born 25 December 1943 in Katowice, Upper Silesia) is a German actress and chanson singer. ... Gottfried John (born August 29, 1942 in Berlin) is a German actor. ...

External links

  Results from FactBites:
The marriage of Maria Braun (469 words)
Hermann and Maria Braun's marriage in 1945, occurring in the midst of a bombing, lasts only a single night and day before Hermann has to return to the front of the war.
Maria is a symbol of postwar Germany attempting to cope with the recent tragic past.
Maria sets aside her private life and her feelings to reach her main goal of achieving material wealth, characteristic of the Economic Miracle that took place in Germany several years after the war.
  More results at FactBites »



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