Rio Das Mortes

The first of seven features directed (and in most cases written) by Rainer Werner Fassbinder in 1970, this early work makes one wonder if his prolific output was always worth the trouble. Two young workers scheme to leave Germany and go after a treasure they believe is hidden in Peru, but a lot of this movie simply fills up space. In contrast to the painterly qualities of the director’s best work, this has the pasty, overlit look of a Bavarian sex comedy. On the other hand, Hanna Schygulla is great in a featured part. (JR)

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