A meditation on method, at a remove, the apparatus foregrounded. History as sets of controls and distributions of men and resources, fixed parameters, ever contested, ever receding. That Straub zeal for the naked mechanics of things, always connected to the workings of Geist in the broadest sense. It is striking that film is a medium that deteriorates, disintegrates, perhaps making it analogous to collective memory.
As expected from Straub's Brechtean cinema, this other-worldly fragment explores the cinematic potential of stasis and offers some final reflections on ancient economic history. Gently subverting an idealization of Caesar's leadership, it underscores the aporia of history (i.e. the mute 'interlocutor' looks like Ceasar, the weird Roman fountain) and tinges its appraisal with a thinly veiled modern class-analysis.