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Beware of a Holy Whore

1971 1h 57m Comedy Drama List
84% Tomatometer 19 Reviews 62% Audience Score 1,000+ Ratings
Jeff (Lou Castel), a director, and his star actor (Eddie Constantine) are taking their time getting to the set of the movie they're currently working on. In the absence of these key figures, the film crew lacks a purposeful way to spend their time, so they drink heavily. However, as booze is downed and boredom and frustration set in, morale hits rock bottom. When Jeff and the male lead finally show, the director is enraged by his crew's slovenliness, and the production spirals into chaos. Read More Read Less

Critics Reviews

View All (19) Critics Reviews
Richard Brody New Yorker This is how the cinema looked, in 1971, to the twenty-six-year-old director Rainer Werner Fassbinder, who already had ten feature films under his belt. Feb 6, 2017 Full Review Sam Adams The Dissolve Beware Of A Holy Whore is splendid to look at, even though most of the film consists of bored and/or disgruntled show-folk lounging around a Spanish estate while working on a movie. Rated: 3/5 Sep 4, 2013 Full Review Vincent Canby New York Times Beware of a Holy Whore is the work of a very young, very gifted film maker. Rated: 4/5 May 9, 2005 Full Review Jordan Brooks Vague Visages While Beware of a Holy Whore symbolizes a voice for Fassbinder’s many criticisms of the filmmaking process, he uses aspects of the film to parody his own life and dispositions. Aug 3, 2023 Full Review Thom Willenbecher Gay Community News (Boston) Whore is unable to justify its own existence, except as a sort of tour de force. Sep 8, 2022 Full Review Yasser Medina Cinefilia Fassbinder, with a disruptive style, frames the creative crisis and dissatisfaction from the filmmaking process, but with a result that only reveals the lack of momentum and the futility established by self-indulgence. [Full review in Spanish] Rated: 6/10 Dec 20, 2021 Full Review Read all reviews

Audience Reviews

View All (27) audience reviews
Audience Member Fassbinder's 1971 film about a German film crew waiting for a production to start whilst on set in a Spanish hotel lobby.  The film starts with the verbal recanting of a Goofy cartoon. This is possibly the most linear part of the entire film's narrative but that's not an insult. The rest of the film shows fragments of how the characters interact on many different levels. The movie also shows the power relations and how these shift throughout the film's duration. The film crew resemble a Germanic version of the trope of superstars Warhol used to use. With waiting comes emotions ranging from an utter lack of enthusiasm through to explosive rage about proceedings not starting when they should or crew members not doing what they should when filming does actually begin. This film was based on Fassbinder's experiences of making the film Whity. It must have been hell for him judging by the events depicted here.  If you're looking for a film with a linear narrative, a 'start, middle and end', if you will, this isn't for you. But if you're looking to be swept away by Fassbinder into a film that is more of an experience, then you'll love this. Rated 4 out of 5 stars 02/19/23 Full Review Audience Member A German film crew sit around a Spanish seaside hotel waiting to make a movie. They can't proceed because the director isn't there and they have no film stock. Soon the director (Lou Castel, obviously channeling Fassbinder himself) arrives, but still they have no film stock. Eventually the film stock arrives, but the director doesn't want to make the film anyway. Everyone sits around the bar drinking too many Cuba Libres and fighting, or hooking up, or breaking up, or just complaining. This is not a film for anyone who demands a clear narrative arc. Things happen ... many of them are quite amusing. Fassbinder plays the production manager. Eddie Constantine plays himself. Fassbinder regulars Hanna Schygulla, Uli Lommel and Kurt Raab all play variations on characters they have played before. It's not among his best films, but in a way, it's one of the most interesting of his early films. Rated 3.5 out of 5 stars 02/01/23 Full Review Audience Member Many auteurs have made at least one film about filmmaking, and Rainer Werner Fassbinder's entry in that canon is a fairly unique one. The film explores the aimless pursuits of a drug-addled film crew, and it casts a spell of malaise through its abstract plot and minimalist camera work. Fassbinder's strongest cards (i.e. subdued use of music, and vicious black humor) are present too, and at times it feels like he's applying his sensibilities to an Antonioni film. Static in its plot, and a bit cold towards humanity, Beware of a Holy Whore isn't among the director's best works, but maybe that's also because this film is the closest he came to self-criticism. Rated 4 out of 5 stars 01/23/23 Full Review Audience Member Fassbinder decides to go meta. It doesn't work. Rated 2 out of 5 stars 02/01/23 Full Review Audience Member His colour films seem to be much more interesting. You can kind of ignore the flimsy plots and unscintillating pacing and just marvel at the photography. I kept thinking I was losing interest and then he'd dazzle me again with another amazing shot. Rated 4 out of 5 stars 01/30/23 Full Review Audience Member This Fassbinder film involves an almost complete film crew which is filled with snobs and queers. It wasn't a group I'd like to spend time with, but one that's fascinating to watch. While watching one can wonder if this was the film that inspired the casting for The Jersey Shore. The movie lives up to its title, which is what lured me in. Beware of a Holy Whore is no Surf Nazis Must Die, in which the title is superior to the film. The movie is stunning and gorgeous. The cinematographer Ballhaus (who's worked with Scorsese many times) did a good job on this film, but I hate the zoom ins on the faces. The acting was spot on and almost flawless, characters were consistent with themselves. I was expecting an orge throughout this whole film, I won't spoil if this happened or not. Rated 3.5 out of 5 stars 01/12/23 Full Review Read all reviews
Beware of a Holy Whore

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Cast & Crew

Taking Off 100% 84% Taking Off Getting Straight 33% 41% Getting Straight Between the Lines 94% 52% Between the Lines Take the Money and Run 91% 80% Take the Money and Run Kotch 75% 68% Kotch Discover more movies and TV shows. View More

Movie Info

Synopsis Jeff (Lou Castel), a director, and his star actor (Eddie Constantine) are taking their time getting to the set of the movie they're currently working on. In the absence of these key figures, the film crew lacks a purposeful way to spend their time, so they drink heavily. However, as booze is downed and boredom and frustration set in, morale hits rock bottom. When Jeff and the male lead finally show, the director is enraged by his crew's slovenliness, and the production spirals into chaos.
Director
Rainer Werner Fassbinder
Screenwriter
Rainer Werner Fassbinder
Production Co
Nova, Tango Film
Genre
Comedy, Drama
Original Language
English
Release Date (Streaming)
Dec 12, 2017
Runtime
1h 57m