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Burden of Dreams (1982)

Not Rated | | Documentary | 24 September 1982 (Sweden)
A documentary following German auteur Werner Herzog as he deals with difficult actors, bad weather and getting a boat over a mountain, all in an effort to make his film Fitzcarraldo (1982).

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 ... Self
Klaus Kinski ... Fitzcarraldo / Self
Claudia Cardinale ... Molly / Self
Jason Robards ... Fitzcarraldo
Mick Jagger ... Wilbur
Alfredo De Rio Tambo Alfredo De Rio Tambo ... Self (as Alfredo de Rio Tambo)
Ángela Reina Ángela Reina ... Self (as Angela Reine)
Carmen Correa Carmen Correa ... Self
Elia De Rio Ene Elia De Rio Ene ... Self (as Elia de Rio Ene)
David Pérez Espinosa David Pérez Espinosa ... Self (as David Perez Espinosa)
Miguel Ángel Fuentes ... Self (as Miguel Angel Fuentes)
Mariano Gagnon Mariano Gagnon ... Self (as Father Mariano Gagnon)
Paul Hittscher Paul Hittscher ... Self
Huerequeque Enrique Bohorquez Huerequeque Enrique Bohorquez ... Self (as Huerequeque Bohoroquez)
Evaristo Nunkuag Ikanan Evaristo Nunkuag Ikanan ... Self
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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>

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Genres:

Documentary

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Ranked 14th in Filmmakers' Greatest Documentaries of All Time in Sight & Sound Magazine's September 2016 issue. See more »

Quotes

Werner Herzog: It's not only my dreams, my belief is that all these dreams are... are yours as well... and the only distinction between me and you is that I can articulate them... and that is what poetry or painting or literature or film-making is all about, it's as simple as that... and I, I make films because I have not learned anything else and I know I can do it to a certain degree... and it is my duty because this might be the inner chronicle of what we are... and we have to articulate ourselves ...
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Connections

Featured in Walking to Werner (2006) See more »

User Reviews

 
Worth seeing, but shallow
3 October 2001 | by SlothNOIRSee all my reviews

I saw this enjoyable documentary film in 1983 and have recently seen it again (2001) at the National Film Theatre in London, together with "Fitzcarraldo" and "Werner Herzog Eats His Shoe" - sore bum!

In 1983 I thought it was brilliant and it was immensely valuable to get an insight into the tortured making of the film "Fitzcarraldo". Seeing it again, almost two decades later, I feel the film skims the surface as Les Blank seems to have little interest in drawing out what went on. He just observes and accepts the events at face value. Only Herzog is interviewed at any length and the burden of his dream(s) does become apparent as the film progresses, however there is virtually no comment from Kinski or the other actors. Les Blank might argue that the film is about Herzog's state of mind and his attitude to the production of Fitzcarraldo. In this, I think it is largely a success. To look for more from the film is perhaps to unfairly employ the benefit of hindsight.

I suspect my disappointment (relative) at seeing this again is the release of "My Best Fiend" in the interim. I find my memory conflating the two films, the piece about Kinski's "hate hate" relationship with the jungle (and almost everything else!) would seem more appropriate to "Burdens" but is in "Fiend".

"Burden of Dreams" and "My Best Fiend" would make a good double bill, giving a much more rounded impression of the context of the production of Fitzcarraldo and the relationship between Herzog and Kinski. If you are interested, try to see them both.


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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

Spanish | English | German

Release Date:

24 September 1982 (Sweden) See more »

Also Known As:

Burden of Dreams See more »

Filming Locations:

Amazon Rainforest, Brazil See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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