Archive of films Mr Bachmann and His Class / Herr Bachmann und seine Klasse
The main protagonist of this 217-minute observational documentary, winner of the Jury Prize at this year’s Berlinale, is Dieter Bachmann, a 65-year-old nonconformist teacher in the German town of Stadtallendorf. The film takes a detailed and highly positive look at the need to reinvent the sense underlying not only education but also public institutions in general and coexistence in contemporary Western society.
Frequently seen in an AC/DC t-shirt, 65-year-old nonconformist teacher Dieter Bachmann takes a unique approach to his sixth-grade students, instructing them more about life than per the school curriculum. He openly engages his multicultural class in discussions of personal problems, their families, and Germany’s past. Taking in an entire semester, during which we see changes in many of his students and their developing relationships, the film more than justifies its 217-minute running time. Maria Speth’s observational documentary is a positive experience that injects fresh hope in the possibilities of education. A winner of the Jury Prize at this year’s Berlinale, the film also reinforces the need to reinvent the sense of public institutions and perspectives on coexistence in contemporary Western society.
About the director
Maria Speth (Titting, Germany). Selected filmography: Madonnas (Madonnen, 2007), 9 Lives (9 Leben, 2010, doc.), Daughters (Töchter, 2014), For Kate (2017), One Lives Because One Is Born (2020), Mr Bachmann and His Class (Herr Bachmann und seine Klasse, 2021, doc.).