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Burden of Dreams (1982)

Not Rated | | Documentary | 24 September 1982 (Sweden)
A documentary on the chaotic production of Werner Herzog's epic Fitzcarraldo (1982), showing how the film managed to get made despite problems that would have floored a less obsessively ... See full summary »

Director:

Les Blank

Writer:

Michael Goodwin (narration)
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4 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Werner Herzog ... Himself
Klaus Kinski ... Fitzcarraldo / Himself
Claudia Cardinale ... Molly / Herself
Jason Robards ... Fitzcarraldo
Mick Jagger ... Wilbur
Alfredo De Rio Tambo Alfredo De Rio Tambo ... Himself (as Alfredo de Rio Tambo)
Ángela Reina Ángela Reina ... Herself (as Angela Reine)
Carmen Correa Carmen Correa ... Herself
Elia De Rio Ene Elia De Rio Ene ... Himself (as Elia de Rio Ene)
David Pérez Espinosa David Pérez Espinosa ... Himself (as David Perez Espinosa)
Miguel Ángel Fuentes ... Himself (as Miguel Angel Fuentes)
Mariano Gagnon Mariano Gagnon ... Himself (as Father Mariano Gagnon)
Paul Hittscher Paul Hittscher ... Himself
Huerequeque Enrique Bohorquez Huerequeque Enrique Bohorquez ... Himself (as Huerequeque Bohoroquez)
Evaristo Nunkuag Ikanan Evaristo Nunkuag Ikanan ... Himself
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Storyline

A documentary on the chaotic production of Werner Herzog's epic Fitzcarraldo (1982), showing how the film managed to get made despite problems that would have floored a less obsessively driven director. Not only does he have major casting problems, losing both Jason Robards (health) and Mick Jagger (other commitments) halfway through shooting, but the crew gets caught up in a war between Peru and Ecuador, there are problems with the weather and the morale of cast and crew is falling rapidly. Written by Michael Brooke <michael@everyman.demon.co.uk>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Documentary

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

Spanish | English | German

Release Date:

24 September 1982 (Sweden) See more »

Also Known As:

Az álom hangja See more »

Filming Locations:

Amazon Rainforest, Brazil See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Throughout production, Les Blank and his small crew became exhausted and exasperated from the stress of the work. Blank said that he felt "unconnected" to the people around him. Keeping up with the antics of Herzog and Klaus Kinski proved difficult for the reserved, introverted Blank. By the last week of production, he was so burnt out that he feared coming out of production "like some Viet Nam veterans, horribly calloused". He wrote in his journal, "I'm tired of it all and I couldn't care less if they move the stupid ship - or finish the fucking film". See more »

Quotes

"Wilbur": And, therefore, since I can't prove a lover, to entertain this farewell spoken days, I am determined to prove a villain and hate the idle pleasures of these days.
"Fitzcarraldo": Wilbur, you are definitely my man!
See more »

Connections

References Doctor Zhivago (1965) See more »

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User Reviews

Walls in the Jungle
7 June 2008 | by tedgSee all my reviews

Here's a remarkable phenomenon.

"Fitzcarraldo" is to my measure a special film, meaning that it evokes in me a profound and lasting response. Indeed, I have it on my list of films you really must see (if you take me seriously). Elsewhere, I have celebrated this filmmaker, and how the twists in his being seem to (at least in this period) have created work that matters.

This is a documentary on the making of that film. Its made by a good filmmaker himself. It tells the tale, an interesting story. And it features two segments of Herzog on the scene, speaking coherently and somewhat poetically of the disruption that is the jungle. Its disturbing in its own right.

So what's wrong? Something significant, I think. Watching this takes much of the richness, the lush smell, out of "Fitz."

It explains it. It flattens it. It surrounds it with a story that is clear and thus takes away the space it naturally has for us to surround it with our own story.

Not all great art works this way, but some apparently does: it designates holes that we readily fill with ourselves and stitch together with the story our life might have been, or might not have. The design of "Fitz" is such that it contrasts the real (meaning "natural") with the stylized (meaning "civilized"). It has a simple spine that we can read and ignore while we understand instead the invisible lace of inner lust, lonely desire.

We need the space that surrounds it. We need the madness, the jungle, the lack of containing story. Its what we fill in with the jumble of our own jungles.

Seeing this takes away the experience of "Fitz." Its not just another case of an encounter with a filmmaker being less rewarding than an encounter with his (her) film. Its a matter of story walls where there shouldn't be.

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


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