The Chronicle of Anna Magdalena Bach

Director: Jean-Marie Straub and Danièle Huillet
Year Released: 1968
Rating: 2.0

Part biography, part performance: not-exactly dynamic duo Straub/Huillet combine verbal biography of the great Johann Sebastian Bach (over photographic stills) with longish sections featuring actor-musicians wearing wigs and playing his compositions. Art house novices should really be careful with this one - the Straub/Huillet approach is essentially cinema at its most minimal, and what many (presumably) find so remarkable about it is how 'bare' it is: no excessive set directions, no excessive camera movement, barely any dialogue, character development or drama, just the music and small pieces of Bach's life (recited quickly and with little inflection). I think it's easier to appreciate the style than necessarily enjoy it as a 'movie' in any sense (if it is even a movie), though anyone ready to accuse the filmmaking team of being completely without charm need to take a look at their delightful short En Rachâchant.