7.8/10
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16 user 10 critic

Die große Ekstase des Bildschnitzers Steiner (1974)

A study of the psychology of a champion ski-jumper, whose full-time occupation is carpentry.

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Walter Steiner ...
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A study of the psychology of a champion ski-jumper, whose full-time occupation is carpentry.

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1 January 1974 (West Germany)  »

Also Known As:

The Great Ecstasy of the Sculptor Steiner  »

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DEM 72,000 (estimated)
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Flying Beyond The Firmament
30 March 2008 | by (Orlando, Florida, USA) – See all my reviews

I thought the documentary was excellent, Herzog rawly captured the danger of ski-jumping/ski-flying, some of the shots were breathtaking and heart-stopping.

I liked how he juxtaposed the normal, rustic life of Steiner with Steiner's death-defying "hobby" without emphasizing and exploiting Steiner's Olympic achievement and previous sky-jumping achievements (which had already been accomplished before the documentary was filmed).

He presented Steiner as an average person with an above-average passtime whom not only wanted to push beyond the limits, but was being manipulated and forced by various Championships to push beyond the limits without any safety precautions, which risked his life.

In some competitions, you could tell Steiner was delighted to fly, even though he knew he would undoubtedly land roughly and possibly injure himself, but at other meets, his fear was visible, and he was visibly angry at being trapped and forced to jump beyond ramps where the landing ground was intentionally not set-up for a potential landing ground and not even secured (in order to enhance the spectacle and intensity and thrill of a soaring jump, and to force records to be made, both of which would attract crowds and bring media attention to the competition), which forced him to literally risk his life.

Underrated Herzog documentary, 10/10


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