(aka "In a Year with 13 Moons" or "In a Year of 13 Moons")


directed by Rainer Werner Fassbinder
Germany 1978


Elvira (Spengler) was Erwin until s/he went to Casablanca for a discreet operation. She now lives in Frankfurt, abandoned by her lover, befriended by a hooker who's not much better off than herself, and ripped to shreds by cruelties and social inequalities. In a Year with 13 Moons is not only Fassbinder's last word on victimised innocence, it's also a subjective response to the suicide of his own lover Armin Meier, and a sincere admission that life is messier than his earlier films acknowledged. A movie riven with contradictions and fuelled by vehemence and passion.

Excerpt from the TimeOut Film Guide


Theatrical Release: November 17th, 1978

Reviews    More Reviews  DVD Reviews

DVD Review: Fantoma - Region 1 - NTSC

DVD Box Cover

CLICK to order from:



Region 1 - NTSC

Runtime 2:04:12

1.85:1 Aspect Ratio

16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 6.41 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s

NOTE: The Vertical axis represents the bits transferred per second. The Horizontal is the time in minutes.


Audio German (Dolby Digital 2.0)
Subtitles English
Features Release Information:
Studio: Fantoma

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen anamorphic - 1.85:1

Edition Details:
• Introduction by Richard Linklater
• Love and Despair, a conversation with filmmaker Werner Schroeter
• Interview with Juliane Lorenz

DVD Release Date: April 13th, 2004
Keep Case

Chapters 18



Fantoma's release of R.W. Fassbinder's "In a Year of 13 Moons" is close to perfect. The image looks absolutely excellent, with vibrant colors, strong contrast and remarkable detail and sharpness. There are some slight instances of edge enhancement, but they are barely noticeable. You will find neither scratches nor any other distortions here. Overall it's quite a stunning transfer.

The German 2.0 soundtrack is very good too. Dialogue, background noise and music are all clearly audible and the track is free of any pops, hiss or drop-outs.

We actually get quite a surprising amount of bonus material. First up is a video introduction by Fassbinder-fan Richard Linklater who talks about his discovery of the great German director as well as the three phases of his work and then goes on to explore the riches of "In a Year with 13 Moons". It's a very intelligent and passionate talk. Then there's an interview with Werner Schroeter, a good friend of Fassbinder's and a great artist in his own right, who talks about his relationship with Fassbinder as well as his admiration of this particular film and Volker Spengler's performance. Fassbinder's editor Juliane Lorenz is doubly present on this disc, first in a revealing and informative interview and then in a selected scene audio commentary, which repeats some of the things she said in the interview, but still gives nice input on the film's use of music and the shooting in Frankfurt.

Overall, this is a splendid way to bring this amazing film to the digital medium. "In a Year of 13 Moons" is my personal favorite Fassbinder film. It's stylistically very experimental and daring as well as tremendously moving and brilliantly acted. The superb transfer of this DVD, its flawless audio track and the insightful extras make it a no-brainer.

 - Stan Czarnecki


DVD Menus


Screen Captures

Subtitle sample





















DVD Box Cover

CLICK to order from:



Region 1 - NTSC


Hit Counter












DONATIONS Keep DVDBeaver alive:

Mail cheques, money orders, cash to:    or CLICK PayPal logo to donate!

Gary Tooze

Thank You!