This is what happens when your car breaks down on a Sunday morning and you have nothing else to do…
Burden of Dreams
For nearly five years, acclaimed German filmmaker Werner Herzog desperately tried to complete one of the most ambitious and difficult films of his career, Fitzcarraldo, the story of one man’s attempt to build an opera house deep in the Amazon jungle. Documentary filmmaker Les Blank captured the unfolding of this production, made more perilous by Herzog’s determination to shoot the most daunting scenes without models or special effects, including a sequence requiring hundreds of native Indians to pull a full-size, 320-ton steamship over a small mountain. The result is an extraordinary document of the filmmaking process and a unique look into the single-minded mission of one of cinema’s most fearless directors.
"If I abandon this project I would be a man without dreams, and I don't want to live like that."
Someone really missed out on a great opportunity to call this Herzcarraldo. It's amazing how closely the making of Herzog's Fitzcarraldo parallels the actual story within the film itself. The film hit every possible snag in its production, from sets falling apart to cast and crew being attacked by natives. And while this is due in large part to Herzog's insane dedication to verisimilitude, it also needs to be said that the director never asks anyone to do anything he doesn't do himself. The problem is that there's almost nothing Herzog won't do himself. There's a shot in the documentary…
In the teeth of a lousy bout of writer's block, it's a blessing to watch someone I admire as much as Werner Herzog saying he's "running out of fantasy". What a great term for the stalling of the imagination - good enough to be swiped for the title of a track on the Manic Street Preachers' 2013 album Rewind the Film.
One of the most quotable documentaries ever, Burden of Dreams sees Herzog in the Amazon rainforest, trying to complete his film Fitzcarraldo. Directed by Herzog's friend and fellow director Les Blank, it largely avoids sensationalism - the famous clip from Herzog's later documentary My Best Fiend of Klaus Kinski screaming out producer Walter Saxer does not appear, despite being…
"I love it, but I love it against my better judgement".
It's difficult to review this objectively, separate from what I consider to be the greatest film ever made, but I might watch FITZCARRALDO soon so I'll save it. The lovely thing is that BURDEN OF DREAMS stands alone as a great documentary and a perfect companion to its subject. It can be watched before (even though it has "spoilers" I endorse doing this, I saw MY BEST FIEND before FITZCARRALDO and the background information made me appreciate the film much more) or alone. It tells a story by itself, focused on a man willing to risk his life for a metaphor and the disappearing native Amazon people that helped…
They say you have to be a little crazy to create good art. Well, Herzog is a complete madman.
I have the greatest respect and admiration for both the man and the filmmaker Werner Herzog. Just as Fitzgerald, Herzog goes unheard lengths to complete his vision, not matter what. To pull a 320-ton steamer up and over a hill is no joke , it's not film tricks, it's not special effects. Herzog actually did it, risking both the entire production and lives, to complete his dream without compromising. The creative and uncompromising madness of Herzog is reflected in the ambitious maniac in Fitzgerald, and vice versa.
Watching Fitzcarraldo and the documentary Burden of Dreams back-to-back is one of the most rewarding film experiences you can ever have. The story of Herzog is in many ways better than the movie…
I've begun production on an all CGI version of Fitzcarraldo. I just need to lug my computer up stairs and I can finish. I probably won't ever get it done.
A poetic documentary that perfectly captures the essence of cinema and provides an understanding of Werner Herzog's extreme passion for filmmaking.
The greatest film ever made about filmmaking.
Werner Herzog ist wahrscheinlich einer der wenigen überbelebenden Abenteurer unserer Zeit. Ich persönlich bin schon relativ jung mit den Filmen des, in München geborenen, Regisseurs konfrontiert worden und es brauchte nicht einmal die ersten 15 Minuten von "Aguirre, der Zorn Gottes" bis mir klar wurde, dass ich diesen Mann bewunderte. Erst viel später, mehr durch Zufall, hörte ich mir die Audiokommentare zu seinen Filmen an, in denen Werner Herzog sehr detailliert und mit einige Anekdoten über das Filmemachen sprach. Und ich realisierte, dass seine Audiokommentare eigentlich noch spannender waren als seine Filme. Les Blanks hat nun einen Dokumentarfilm geschaffen, der zeigt, dass Werner Herzog eigentlich von Anfang an dazu verdammt war, solche Filme, wie eben "Fitzcarraldo" oder "Aguirre, der Zorn Gottes", zu drehen. Denn er ist ein unermüdlich Suchender, dem nichts unmöglich scheint und dem die Last seiner Träume nie zu schwer wird.
I want to make my new short film and I am too lazy to even write the fucking script.
And Herzog goes to the amazon jungle for 4 years to make his dream come true.
That is called commitment.
And I just wish that every director had that much commitment toward their project instead of scrapping it fast so they could earn a few bucks.
Spine #287 of "Criterion Collection".
Very good making-of doc. Really shows the craziness of the production up close.
herzog makes all of us look like bad sad quitters.
kinski-mania is kept to a minimum unfortunately (fortunately?)
Interesting doc with some beautiful images of it's own, despite ostensibly being about the making of another movie. Of course this is gold-dust for officianados, or anyone interested in the practical difficulties of such a production. But I think it's more interesting subject is the locations in Peru, rather than the film-making itself.
An intriguing and stunning documentary about Werner Herzog's dream to make Fitzcarraldo.
It is crazy what he had forced his crew to do in the middle of Amazon jungle in order to achieve his vision. It was a nervous breakdown experience.
What started as simple behind the scenes became a dramatic documentary about his passion and his fight to beat the jungle.
Fitzcarraldo is one of his best movies...
One of the most profound films anyone who wants to make art can ever hope to see, even if Herzog comes close to being a monster. I can only imagine what would have happened if he had failed. But he didn't, so this isn't a horror film. Instead, it's unbearably moving in its own way, like the end of a Cormac McCarthy novel. Why doesn't anyone ever suggest Herzog make Blood Meridian?
High-rated movies with very few views. Suggestions are welcome.
Great 60-90 min films (for those days when you just don't have the energy to watch a 3 hour masterpiece)
Doesn't the title of the list explain it well enough? This is a list of hight quality "short" films. Easy…