The Third Generation

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  • 1979
  • 1 hr 45 min
  • 6.8  (2,661)

The Third Generation is a 1979 German film directed by Rainer Werner Fassbinder. The movie stars Eddie Constantine, Hanna Schygulla and Volker Spengler. The film was part of a trilogy by Fassbinder that examined the social and political landscape of postwar Germany. The Third Generation is an absurdist satire that follows a group of leftist terrorists as they attempt to navigate the complexities of modern society.

The film is set in Germany during the 1970s, a time of political and social upheaval. A group of leftist militants, known as the Third Generation, have been carrying out a series of bombings and kidnappings in an attempt to overthrow the government. The group is led by Edgar (Udo Kier), a former businessman turned revolutionary.

Edgar enlists the help of an unlikely ally, the aging gangster Herr Walsch (Eddie Constantine), to help him with his plans. Walsch is an old-school criminal who is initially skeptical of Edgar's revolutionary ideas. However, he is eventually won over by Edgar's passion and joins the group.

Meanwhile, another member of the Third Generation, Irene (Hanna Schygulla), is struggling with her own doubts about the group's tactics. Despite her reservations, Irene continues to participate in the group's activities, which soon spiral out of control.

The Third Generation is a darkly comedic film that satirizes both the radical left and the conservative right in Germany. Fassbinder skewers both sides for their failures to address the country's problems, including economic inequality and the rise of extremism.

The film is notable for its unconventional narrative structure, which shifts between scenes of violent action and absurdist comedy. Fassbinder's use of humor is particularly effective in undercutting the seriousness of the group's political goals.

The performances in the film are strong across the board. Eddie Constantine stands out as the grizzled Walsch, bringing a sense of world-weariness to his role. Hanna Schygulla is also excellent as Irene, capturing her character's conflicted emotions with nuance and subtlety.

Volker Spengler gives a memorable performance as a transvestite member of the Third Generation. Spengler's character is a particularly effective symbol of the group's rejection of traditional gender roles and societal norms.

Overall, The Third Generation is a thought-provoking and fiercely satirical film that remains relevant today. Fassbinder's incisive commentary on society and politics still resonates, and the film's dark humor ensures that it remains engaging and entertaining throughout.

The Third Generation
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  • Release Date
  • Runtime
    1 hr 45 min
  • Language
  • IMDB Rating
    6.8  (2,661)