Wednesdays in April
“Every man should pull a boat over a mountain once in his life.” – Werner Herzog
The films of director Werner Herzog are a mesmerizing combination of spiritual rebellion and cosmic slapstick – Every Man for Himself and God Against All, as one title put it. Notorious for his own acts of Ahab-like defiance – dragging a ship across a mountain for Fitzcarraldo, hypnotizing the cast of Heart of Glass — Herzog has written and produced nearly all his own films, defying not only nature, but (just as impressively) the movie industry as well. A risk-taker who would do anything to produce the desired effect (in pursuit of what he has termed “Ecstatic Truth”), Herzog has made the filming process a challenging, sometimes downright dangerous adventure for his actors (most notably his volatile cinematic doppelganger, Klaus Kinski) as he pushed them to internalize their roles to the fullest. Avoiding any conventional career path, Herzog emerged with R.W. Fassbinder and Wim Wenders at the forefront of the New German Cinema movement in the 1970s. Alternating between epic historical dramas, oddball character studies, and brilliantly unnerving documentaries, Herzog has produced a body of images unmatched for their audacity, surreal beauty and flair for the grotesque. Through it all, he has remained a filmmaker who embraces life at its most apocalyptic extremes. This April, The Loft Cinema celebrates the boundary-pushing auteur, Werner Herzog, with four of his most unforgettable narrative features on the big screen!