Formerly "A Movie A Day" :/

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Aguirre, the Wrath of God - 1972 - Dir. Herzog

In a similar vein as Fitzcarraldo, Aguirre, the Wrath of God, features Klaus Kinski near some water being completely batshit insane and fantastically unreasonable. The film follows a group of Spanish soilders who are heading down river to discover the city of EL DORADO. Unfortunately, the second-in-command happens to be Klaus Kinski who causes a mutiny and then convinces the rest of the group to form their own nation of El Dorado and eventually leads them towards their doom and destruction. Kinski only becomes more and more delusional and has convinced himself that they will eventually overthrow the crown itself. Now, I'm a fan of Klaus Kinski, he's an intense fella, no doubt about it. I mean, it's a role suited to the man's talents. Herzog moves us through the story quickly with quirky or hallucinatory asides and consistantly awful events that have convinced me to never travel down a river of ANY SIZE. I mean, awful terrible shit never stops happening to those people. In some sense, the movie is watching people around Klaus Kinski die. And it's beautiful. I forgot to mention that. The movie has some beautiful shots. The opening sequence of the incredibly ungainly bunch make their way down a mountain is stunning. And the score only helps, creating a thourough amount of religious dread when it plays. OH, the pan flute guy is the best. There's a pan flute guy... he's the best. In fact, as I think about this movie, it really has been bringing a lot of smiles to my face. There's a lot of goofy one-liners that herzog sneaks into the movie, but he fits them in so well. And the climax, there's a shot of the raft being stopped by a wall of foliage and the massiveness of what they're up against is felt. It's fantastic. Yeah, this was a fine film. As I started this I was all "Eh, it's good." but now I'm all "Yeah, that was great!"
Kinski relaxing between shots.

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