Jean-Marie Straub + Daniele Huillet

The husband and wife team who created radical minimalist films for over 40 years


Combined with the challenge often presented in comprehending the spoken word in their films, the spectator must adopt new methods of viewing. Certainly they must expect a certain amount of resistance, especially on initial screenings (and certain of their films resist me still), but the reward is there – frustration gives way to moments of sublimity rarely paralleled in the cinema, incomprehension cedes to revelation.
-Daniel Fairfax

“No one seriously interested in film should neglect (Straub and Huillet) or the theoretical issues that attend them.”
-David Thomson

“The power and beauty in these films are not the kind that they (or we) can comfortably live with, because they essentially tell us to change our life -– which ‘movies’ aren’t supposed to do, except metaphorically. The trouble with Straub-Huillet: they mean business.”
-Jonathan Rosenbaum

 The Chronicle of Anna Magdalena Bach (1968)

Recommended Reading:

  • A career retrospective by Daniel Fairfax from Senses of Cinema
  • Daniele Huillet’s obituary in the Times, written by Dave Kehr
  • An introduction to a 1982 showing of Straub and Huillet’s films by Jonathan Rosenbaum
  • A brief profile on Straub and Huillet at They Shoot Pictures, Don’t They?