This observational epic, winner of the Silver Bear at Berlinale, meets teacher Mr Bachmann and his class of 12-14 year olds in the German town of Stadtallendorf.
Mr Bachmann is the 64-year-old teacher for class 6B at a comprehensive school in Stadtallendorf, Germany. It’s an industrial town that’s home to generations of economic migrants, and his class of 12 to 14-year-olds includes kids from nine different countries, and a full range of religious, linguistic and cultural differences.
Filmmaker Maria Speth filmed Mr Bachmann and his class for six months to create this rich, poignant and often joyful observational epic. She captures Bachmann’s unconventional, holistic approach to teaching as he meets his mixed ability class with respect, patience and humour (and a fair amount of guitar-playing), all the while challenging the kids to exercise the muscles of their empathy for each other.