Werner Herzog appears in the strangest places


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He was in The Boondocks, Jack Reacher and Rick & Morty and now he's in Star Wars. . . . Imagine telling people in the 70s that one day Werner Herzog would be in Star Wars.

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Not so unexpected but I know he is in the 80s adaptation of Hard To Be A God (which I still haven't seen).



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Do you watch any television?

I do, I watch the news from different sources. Sometimes I see things that are completely against my cultural nature. I was raised with Latin and Ancient Greek and poetry from Greek antiquity, but sometimes, just to see the world I live in, I watch “WrestleMania.”

An unexpected choice.

You have to know what a good amount of the population is watching. Do not underestimate the Kardashians. As vulgar as they may be, it doesn’t matter that much, but you have to find some sort of orientation. As I always say, the poet must not close his eyes, must not avert them.

So you’ve been watching “Keeping Up With the Kardashians?”

I’m starting to discover it. I’m curious; that’s my guiding principle.


call me big papa
I think he's bang on there.

A lot of "cineastes" I think see this as him trolling. But he's right.

Especially about WWE.

I've not seen one of his movies in a while. Has he done any good ones? The last one I recall watching was Encounters at the End of the World, which I lapped up.


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I find the films tend to have their moments but the documentaries are much better as a whole, something like Grizzly Man isn't half the slog that Aguirre or Stroszek is.


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I've been meaning to watch the Netflix one on volcanoes for a while, but still haven't gotten round to it.

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There was quite a good piece a couple of years ago when he did that Netflix documentary about the internet. Tying together his making a "branded" film (it was bankrolled by a tech company) and Herzog's becoming a kooky brand himself.

His next one's streaming for free on MUBI this weekend



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Herzog's Minnesota Declaration: Defining 'ecstatic truth'

1. By dint of declaration the so-called Cinema Verité is devoid of verité. It reaches a merely superficial truth, the truth of accountants.

2. One well-known representative of Cinema Verité declared publicly that truth can be easily found by taking a camera and trying to be honest. He resembles the night watchman at the Supreme Court who resents the amount of written law and legal procedures. "For me," he says, "there should be only one single law: the bad guys should go to jail."

Unfortunately, he is part right, for most of the many, much of the time.

3. Cinema Verité confounds fact and truth, and thus plows only stones. And yet, facts sometimes have a strange and bizarre power that makes their inherent truth seem unbelievable.

4. Fact creates norms, and truth illumination.

5. There are deeper strata of truth in cinema, and there is such a thing as poetic, ecstatic truth. It is mysterious and elusive, and can be reached only through fabrication and imagination and stylization.

6. Filmmakers of Cinema Verité resemble tourists who take pictures amid ancient ruins of facts.

7. Tourism is sin, and travel on foot virtue.

8. Each year at springtime scores of people on snowmobiles crash through the melting ice on the lakes of Minnesota and drown. Pressure is mounting on the new governor to pass a protective law. He, the former wrestler and bodyguard, has the only sage answer to this: "You can´t legislate stupidity."

9. The gauntlet is hereby thrown down.

10. The moon is dull. Mother Nature doesn't call, doesn't speak to you, although a glacier eventually farts. And don´t you listen to the Song of Life.

11. We ought to be grateful that the Universe out there knows no smile.

12. Life in the oceans must be sheer hell. A vast, merciless hell of permanent and immediate danger. So much of a hell that during evolution some species - including man - crawled, fled onto some small continents of solid land, where the Lessons of Darkness continue.


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that's terrible writing. i think herzog is ridiculous actually. his films are terrible and hes always been a caricature of himself.


The man is, in my opinion, a pathological liar,

my theory is that he has a bet on with somebody to
a. never tell the truth
b. talk about jungle at any opportunity

this is everything you need to know about Herzog
Werner Herzog: [On the jungle] Kinski always says it's full of erotic elements. I don't see it so much erotic. I see it more full of obscenity. It's just - Nature here is vile and base. I wouldn't see anything erotical here. I would see fornication and asphyxiation and choking and fighting for survival and... growing and... just rotting away. Of course, there's a lot of misery. But it is the same misery that is all around us. The trees here are in misery, and the birds are in misery. I don't think they - they sing. They just screech in pain. It's an unfinished country. It's still prehistorical. The only thing that is lacking is - is the dinosaurs here. It's like a curse weighing on an entire landscape. And whoever... goes too deep into this has his share of this curse. So we are cursed with what we are doing here. It's a land that God, if he exists has - has created in anger. It's the only land where - where creation is unfinished yet. Taking a close look at - at what's around us there - there is some sort of a harmony. It is the harmony of... overwhelming and collective murder. And we in comparison to the articulate vileness and baseness and obscenity of all this jungle - Uh, we in comparison to that enormous articulation - we only sound and look like badly pronounced and half-finished sentences out of a stupid suburban... novel... a cheap novel. We have to become humble in front of this overwhelming misery and overwhelming fornication... overwhelming growth and overwhelming lack of order. Even the - the stars up here in the - in the sky look like a mess. There is no harmony in the universe. We have to get acquainted to this idea that there is no real harmony as we have conceived it. But when I say this, I say this all full of admiration for the jungle. It is not that I hate it, I love it. I love it very much. But I love it against my better judgment.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pF5xBtaL3YI
also, Land of Silence and Darkness is amazing


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There was a cool bit at the end of the one I just watched where they met a cargo cult. They worshipped an American G.I. called John Frum they said was effectively like Jesus to them and who would one day return with all sorts of consumer goods before leading them to The Last Kingdom. Apparently he lives in the volcano and uses it as a portal to travel between their island and America.


Cargo cults are the weirdest things... it made a powerful impression when I read about them. They perfectly illustrate so many interesting things; how cause and effect may not be related (an aspect of the problem of induction I suppose), how different perspectives can change transform your world utterly and so on. Plus they are just such a mindfuck in their own right with this inbuilt and melancholy futility that is hard to resist. Also one of Serge Gainsbourg's best songs of course.