GenreComedy, Crime Music directorPeer Raben, Holger Munzer LanguageGerman
DirectorRainer Werner Fassbinder WriterRainer Werner Fassbinder Release date26 June 1969 (Berlin International Film Festival) CastUlli Lommel (Bruno), Hanna Schygulla (Johanna), Katrin Schaake (Dame im Zug), Liz Soellner (Zeitungsverkäuferin), Rainer Werner Fassbinder (Franz), Ingrid Caven (Zweite Prostituierte) Similar moviesJohn Wick, Hitman: Agent 47, Blackhat, Mr. & Mrs. Smith, Things to Do in Denver When You're Dead, Hitman
Love is colder than death on the train
Love is Colder Than Death (German: Liebe ist kälter als der Tod) is a 1969 German black-and-white film directed by Rainer Werner Fassbinder, his first feature film. The cinematographer Dietrich Lohmann and the cast as an ensemble won an award at the German Film Awards in 1970.
Petty hood Franz (Fassbinder) refuses to join the syndicate, where he meets a handsome young thug called Bruno (Lommel) and gives him his address in Munich. It is the flat of the prostitute Joanna (Schygulla), where Franz lives as her pimp. Bruno has been ordered by the syndicate to follow Franz and on going to the address is told he has moved. So he goes round the streets of the city asking prostitutes if they know a whore called Joanna.
Eventually he finds where the pair are hiding, because Franz is being sought by a Turk for killing his brother. Bruno offers to solve the problem, so the three go to the café where the Turk can be found and shoot him. As they leave, Bruno also shoots the waitress who is the only witness. Franz is picked up by the police for both killings and, while he is held for questioning, Joanna starts an affair with Bruno.
When Franz is freed because the police have no evidence, the three then plan a bank robbery. As they arrive outside, plain clothes police appear and Bruno is killed in a shootout while Franz and Joanna get away. In the car she tells him she had tipped the cops off about the robbery. He says "Nutte" [whore] and keeps on driving as the film fades to white.
Initial reception was generally negative, and the film was even booed at the 19th Berlin International Film Festival in 1969. Today, however, it is seen as a fine example of Fassbinder's early style, with a heavy 'nouvelle vague' influence.
The film is dedicated to "Claude Chabrol, Éric Rohmer, Jean-Marie Straub, Linio, and Cuncho". The last two refer to the main characters in Damiano Damiani's 1966 film A Bullet for the General. Ulli Lommel's styling (and also the poster artwork) is inspired by Alain Delon in Le Samouraï.