Original Cast Album: Company

Director: D. A. Pennebaker
Year Released: 1970
Rating: 2.5

Pennebaker gets the opportunity to film the cast of Stephen Sondheim's musical Company as they make the final recording at Columbia Records - the last chunk of it is legendary actress Elaine Stritch struggling to produce a version of her signature song, "Ladies Who Lunch" (compare/contrast with Anna Kendrick's rendition in Camp) that's pleasing to record producer Thomas Z. Shepard and the auteur himself.  Running a scant 53 minutes, it's a little brief - in all fairness, it was originally intended to be a TV pilot - and familiarity with the original production is kind of required in advance (as it provides context), but it's still invaluable as both a time capsule and a way to show how the "creative process" works.  Making art may not be physically challenging like construction or firefighting ... but it can be emotionally taxing.