The film can be considered as a representation of the ruthless bourgeois hypocrisy. The location is a country house, a small castle in Stockach. In this town in the south of Germany during a weekend the story takes place. Fassbinder aims to investigate the characters, the housekeepers and the ‘wide’ family that owns the castle, shooting their figures reflected on windows, mirrors and transparent plastic surfaces of special furnitures.
The event is introduced together with Francesco Restuccia (Philosopher, PhD researcher). The content of the film about the topics of reflection and mirrors is presented through the thinking of three philosophers: Roland Barthes, Michel Foucault and Vilém Vlusser.
Fassibinder tries to simulate a sort of psychoanalytic session where the characters are the patients. The country house of the movie becomes the Freud’s studio. In fact Freud used to have a mirror hanging on the window where his image and the patient’s image were alternately reflected during the therapeutic encounters. Chinese Roulette is literally a psychological group game.
Chinesisches Roulette (Chinese Roulette; Rainer Werner Fassbinder, 1976)
Interpretative plan of the film location: a small castle in Stockach (South of Germany), mirrors and other reflective surfaces are highlighted in red.
Digital frame of the film.