In his idiosyncratic take on Ibsen’s A Doll’s House, Fassbinder finds startling new resonances in the famous source text despite being confined to working within a television studio. Although the play was already critical of bourgeois marriage, Fassbinder amplifies its sense of smothering confinement. The trials and tribulations of Nora (Margit Carstensen), trapped in a rigid marriage to Torvald (Joachim Hansen), play out as a blistering psychodrama that is visually refracted through latticework, curtains, prismatic glasses, and multi-paneled mirrors. Steeped in his signature themes, Nora Helmer is Fassbinder at his most forceful and resourceful.

  • Rainer Werner Fassbinder
  • 1974
  • West Germany
  • German with English subtitles
  • 16mm
  • 101 minutes