”I live my life or I end my life with this project,” renegade director Werner Herzog vowed on the set of his jungle epic Fitzcarraldo, in which a 19th-century iconoclast attempts to drag a 320-ton steamship over a steep Amazonian landmass. Herzog’s death-defying endeavor (executed with the help of an indigenous Indian tribe, not special effects) is the basis for Burden of Dreams, Les Blank’s lyric chronicle of the film’s four-year evolution. Regarded as a standard-bearer for making-of pictures — largely because Herzog proved a more captivating study in obsession than his subject — Dreams pairs nicely with Herzog’s own introspective My Best Fiend, about Fitzcarraido’s madman star, Klaus Kinski. Blank’s unobtrusive style — ”You don’t push your subject,” he commentates, ”you wait and wait and wait” — observes nature’s wrath as a metaphor for artistic torment, culminating with Herzog pontificating, ”The birds here don’t sing, they just screech in pain.” EXTRAS In a 2005 video interview, Herzog reasserts his gloomy worldview; but Blank’s 1980 short Werner Herzog Eats His Shoe — a leather boot served with onions, garlic, and hot sauce — adds a solid helping of levity.
Burden of Dreams ''I live my life or I end my life with this project,'' renegade director Werner Herzog vowed on the set of his jungle epic Fitzcarraldo, in...Burden of DreamsDocumentary ''I live my life or I end my life with this project,'' renegade director Werner Herzog vowed on the set of his jungle epic Fitzcarraldo, in...2005-05-09
Genre: Documentary; Director: Les Blank
Posted May 9 2005 — 12:00 AM EDT
- Q-Tip announces final A Tribe Called Quest album
- 'The Walking Dead': Negan's brutal kill scene recreated with Legos
- JoJo honors Selena with 'Dreaming of You' cover in hometown
- 'Supernatural': Ackles, Padalecki discuss the effects of Mary's choice
- 'Pitch' EP explains the heartbreaking reveal behind the premiere twist
- Bryan Cranston performs dramatic reading of 'Shout Out to My Ex'
- Stephen Colbert scolds Run the Jewels for suggestive new Halloween song