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How Much Wood Would a Woodchuck Chuck... (1976)

How much Wood would a Woodchuck chuck... - Beobachtungen zu einer neuen Sprache (original title)
Herzog examines the world championships for cattle auctioneers, his fascination with a language created by an economic system, and compares it to the lifestyle of the Amish, who live nearby.

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Herzog examines the world championships for cattle auctioneers, his fascination with a language created by an economic system, and compares it to the lifestyle of the Amish, who live nearby. Written by <mikewittr@aol.com>

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September 1976 (West Germany)  »

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How Much Wood Would a Woodchuck Chuck...  »

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One Almost Curl
27 April 2007 | by (Virginia Beach) – See all my reviews

I had to shake my head in wonder for 45 minutes. This has to be one of the most bizarrely motivated documentaries I have ever seen. It documents an auctioneer's contest. And believe me, we have to sit through the whole routines of every contestant, a death march of blather.

Its not that he's making fun of this American "institution." He really is fascinated by this and had the winner here appear in "Bruno S," in a fabricated part. And he has on numerous times commented on how he finds this hypnotizing. The interesting part of the film is not in the film; that's amazingly boring. Its in the wonder of why this German filmmaker, this sometimes genius who had by then made one of the best two dozen films in history, this risktaker, this idealist – why he would spend his time and ours on this. If it were 45 minutes of dirt and clouds, I might understand, but this?

There are a few transcendental moments that he's caught, The context is in Amish country, and he had a crew, so before we begin the contest proper, he shows us some of these people. Now that's the Herzog we know and love. Some of these faces are worth cherishing, especially the women: and one little girl, so cleanly groomed, with hair so perfectly and carefully combed back in an ultramodest style. Except, except for one twist that you know requires an artist to create and wear. A whole life of creativity in that one movement on a patient cherub's head.

Ted's Evaluation -- 2 of 3: Has some interesting elements.


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