Lola (1981 film)

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Theatrical release poster
Directed byRainer Werner Fassbinder
Produced byHorst Wendlandt
Written byRainer Werner Fassbinder
Pea Fröhlich
Peter Märthesheimer
StarringBarbara Sukowa
Armin Mueller-Stahl
Mario Adorf
Music byPeer Raben
Distributed byUnited Artists Classics
(US theatrical)
(Region 1 DVD)
Release date
  • 20 August 1981 (1981-08-20) (Germany)
  • 4 August 1982 (1982-08-04) (United States)
Running time
113 minutes
CountryWest Germany

Lola is a 1981 West German film directed by Rainer Werner Fassbinder, and is the third in his BRD Trilogy. The first film in the trilogy is The Marriage of Maria Braun and the second is Veronika Voss.


In 1957 in the town of Coburg, as in most of West Germany, reconstruction is the watchword, and the élite of Coburg all benefit: the mayor, the police chief, the bank president, the newspaper editor and most of all, Shuckert. He is a property developer and also owns the town brothel which the other men frequent, his favourite worker being its singer Lola.

This cosy arrangement is threatened by the arrival in the town hall of the high-minded and cultured von Bohm, a refugee from East Prussia, as the new building commissioner. Divorced, he hires a woman with a little granddaughter as his housekeeper and devotes himself to his new job. One day, while he is out at work, his housekeeper shows her daughter round his house. It is Lola, who decides she wants to know this interesting man and under her real name of Marie-Luise soon attracts his attention. Unaware of her night job or of the fact that Schuckert is the father of her little girl, he tries to get involved with her, but she warns him off. When he is finally taken to the brothel, he discovers the truth about her.

In the meantime he has been collecting evidence of the widespread corruption of Coburg, over the rampant corruption, including building permits, masterminded by Schuckert, and now decides to put a stop to it. Nobody is interested, however. Unable to change the system, and still in love with Lola, with Schuckert's blessing he marries her. As a wedding gift, Schuckert gives the pair the deeds of the brothel and, while von Bohm is taking a walk after the church ceremony, takes the bride to bed.



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