Werner Herzog's singular, uncompromising career in filmmaking spans over four decades and has included feature films, documentaries, and even two works (Little Dieter Needs to Fly and Rescue Dawn) that offer, respectively, a nonfiction and fictional retelling of the same event.
Regardless of genre, each of his films seems preoccupied with the place of humans within the natural world and the instability of both fiction and reality. Herzog strives for a concept he has termed "ecstatic truth," which is "mysterious and elusive, and can be reached only through fabrication and imagination and sylization." (Herzog on Herzog, p. 301)
This series specifically focuses on five early, fictional works from the 1970s, including well-known collaborations with actors Klaus Kinski (Aguirre, The Wrath of God) and Bruno S. (The Enigma of Kaspar Hauser, Stroszek) as well as two of the director's most experimental works, the incomparable Even Dwarfs Started Small and Heart of Glass (in which he uses hypnotism on the actors to eerie effect.)
Please join us Wednesday nights at 7 p.m. in the first floor Corner Room of Mid-Manhattan Library starting on February 29, 2012 for the Films of Werner Herzog.
Download official flier: B&W | Color
February 29, 2012 at 7 p.m.
Aguirre, The Wrath of God (1972, 93 min)
"Quiet and atmospheric, creepy and grisly, drenched in both equatorial sunshine and scarlet blood—the film is startlingly powerful as it subtly examines themes of imperialism, corporate greed and ultimately personal madness."
— Rich Cline, Shadows on the Wall
March 7, 2012 at 7 p.m.
Even Dwarfs Started Small (1970, 96 min)
"Truly one of the most bizarre and hilariously disturbing freakshows ever executed by a major director, Even Dwarfs Started Small is sure to impress and perplex even the most ardent admirers of German auteur Werner Herzog."
— Wade Major, Boxoffice Magazine
March 14, 2012 at 7 p.m.
The Enigma of Kaspar Hauser (1974, 110 min)
"In Herzog the line between fact and fiction is a shifting one. He cares not for accuracy but for effect, for a transcendent ecstasy. Kaspar Hauser tells its story not as a narrative about its hero, but as a mosaic of striking behavior and images..."
— Roger Ebert, rogerebert.com
March 21, 2012 at 7 p.m.
Heart of Glass (1974, 94 min)
"...a dreamlike atmosphere of vision, of hallucination, of prophecy, of going through life as if sleepwalking through it, of materialism and of collective madness...If you're in the mood for a one-of-a-kind film that is haunting but obscure, that demands intellectual analysis, then this Herzog film should give the thinking viewer much to chew on..."
— Dennis Schwartz, Ozus’ World Movie Review
March 28, 2012 at 7 p.m.
Stroszek (1977, 116 min)
"Constantly working against Mr. Herzog's very cool view of the human condition is not only the humor...but also the physical beauty of the landscapes, the cityscapes and the squalid interiors. This visual lyricism, which at first seems at odds with the subject, eventually becomes a further celebration of Stroszek's survival."
— Vincent Canby, New York Times
Coming Next: Films of Krzsyztof Kieslowski in April/May 2012.