• Director-Producer

    Maria Speth

  • Screenwriters

    Maria Speth, Reinhold Vorschneider

  • Germany 2021. 217min

  • UK Distribution

    New Wave Films

  • Language

    German

    With English subtitles

This film’s BFI Player premiere is scheduled for the time listed above. You have 24 hours to start watching and 4 hours to complete the film once you’ve started. Tickets can be booked until the end time listed above (subject to availability).

Mr Bachmann and his pupils (aged between 12 and 14) live in Stadtallendorf, formerly the site of a secret Second World War munitions factory and now an industrial town that’s home to generations of economic migrants. The class is representative of this history, with several recent arrivals still struggling with the language of their new home. All the while, their sexagenarian, rock band T-shirt wearing teacher’s effortlessly egalitarian approach encourages students to develop empathy for one another through openness and listening. Shot over six months, Reinhold Vorschneider’s patient cinematography works with the spontaneity of the classroom environment to lend emotional weight to even the most fleeting moments. The pacing and observational method call to mind the work of Frederick Wiseman, yet Speth’s intimate approach creates an engaging and tender drama.

Hyun Jin Cho

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