Fitzcarraldo Reviews

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September 25, 2015
"Fitzcarraldo went into a region of supernatural wonder, far from the world of common day. He encountersfabulous forces - his own passion, the otherwordly spirituality of the indigenous people who help him inhis mad undertaking for inscrutable reasons of their own. He wins a decisive battle: he moves a ship over a mountain. He returns to the world with the knowledge that the undoable was done. On the quest for theHoly Grail, the journey sometimes leads to other gifts. Fitzcarraldo's journey started out as a quest for thegrail of an opera house, but the gift that he brought back was the knowledge that seeminglyinsurmountable obstacles were overcome. That is why he can smile and smoke his cigar."
August 23, 2015
I love Werner Herzog's more recent documentaries, but this 1982 film is astonishing. Based on a true story, it involves the actual moving of a 320-ton steamship over a hill in The Amazon. It deserves five stars just for that. It might not make your 'favourites' list but if you admire movie-making, single-mindedness and determination, watch it just for that!
August 19, 2015
There's madness in his method... Werner Herzog and Klaus Kinski seem made for each other - they're both clearly more than slightly unhinged, and this epic tale of exploration in the Amazonian rainforest is often spectacular, not least in the gargantuan effort of dragging a massive steamer over a mountain.

But for all their commitment and purpose, I also found it hugely problematic...
Fitzcarraldo is pretty unlikeable. For all his lofty artistic ambitions to bring opera to the rainforest, it's basically a tale about money and stripping the natural resources out of the land, whether it's rubber plantations or hacking swathes of forest down simply to haul the ship over the mountain. The exploitation of the local tribes seems pretty blatant too.

I'm glad I've seen it, but God it does go on...
August 5, 2015
How was I even allowed to study film without watching this one first? Danke schön, Herr Herzog!
½ July 13, 2015
Comparing this to another Herzog film, Aguirre; The Wrath of God, I was much more into this film, and prefer it to Aguirre. This film, while an hour longer than Aguirre, was much more involving and had characters that you could sympathize with, where in Aguirre nobody was really that you could relate to. From this film's beautiful cinematography, to it's stellar leading performance from Klaus Kinski, this is definitely worth watching.
½ November 13, 2011
- Watched for the 2nd time in s couple years, this is a major film in International cinema. This time I watched with Werner Herzog's commentary which was very enlightening and entertaining. There is also a great documentary on the making of this film called "Burden of Dreams". Both film are must watch movies for serious film fans!

- I had wanted to see this film for the last 15years, and glad i have finally done so. It is the true story of a man with the single goal/mission of bringing Opera(specifically his favourite - Caruso) to the Jungle. He risks all his finanaces in a trip down the amazon with the goal of moving a several hundred ton Steamship over a mountain.

The film productions also underwent many of the same challenges as they tried to accurately recreate the events( as documented in the film"Burden of Dreams"). Klaus Kinski is perfect in the role as he totally captures the insanity and determination of this mission. This film would be a great companion piece to "Apocalypse Now". Check this film out, it's a must for serious film lovers!
½ May 14, 2015
Herzog's troubled production mirrored this tale of epic folly, but the end result is worthwhile. Kinski is as ever an interesting lead.
½ May 10, 2015
The documentary chronicling the making of this film is almost better than the film itself. While I do find this movie runs longer than it should, I always go back to it. The sheer beauty and idea of a man and his pursuit of a dream against all obstacles is not a new plot to cinema. However it has never been approached in this way. Klaus Kinski is unforgettable as is the cinematography. An amazing film.
Super Reviewer
½ April 12, 2015
An intriguing though at times very plodding film concerning a very ambitious man (Klaus Kinski) who is inspired to try to build an opera house in the jungles of South Africa. Director Werner Herzog does a fabulous job capturing the lower-class and primitive working status of these areas, but wisely avoids this being an exercise of "fish out of water" with Kinski's character. The film does go on too long, but it does remain interesting even when it starts to lose steam in the middle portions. Kinski's bug-eyed bewilderment and passion are perfect for this character, and he is the biggest reason of all this film is a success and viewed by many people to be a masterpiece.
½ March 29, 2015
I was beginning to think that this was a remake (or follow up) of Aguire for a while and I thought that film was overrated so my enthusiasm to get through the full 2.5 hours plus was waining. Then I began to realise that this is a very low key monumental epic and it was quite clear that what you see is what you get which is pretty mind-blowing. By this I mean that when Fitzgerald took a huge steamboat over a mountain, this was actually done for real. Perhaps this was based on a true story, I don't know, but if not, then you have to wonder at the mind of Werner Herzog, which anyone who has seen Even Dwarves Started Small would already be doing, of course.
March 20, 2015
Kinski once again dominates the screen with an enigmatic performance of a man wanting to build an opera house deep in the Peruvian Amazon Jungle
July 13, 2011

Somewhere between 2 1/2 and 3 stars. The attempt to get the boat up the mountain is interesting to watch.
The film is marred by awful dubbing and ...
January 1, 2015
Crazy and fun to watch.
December 9, 2014
A slow-paced film that was enjoyable for most of its run-time yet is undone by the last 20 minutes. After waiting for 2 hours and 20 minutes for them to get the boat over the mountain...... they go right back to the start having accomplished nothing. Really, what was the point? Also, Herzog is willing to cut down a forest and literally move a ship over a hill but can't make a model shot look real? Really?
½ November 29, 2014
A staggering work of art. No one makes movies like Herzog, no one dares.
October 3, 2014
Mostly for me, this isn't the type of movie I am interested in. I've seen foreign films I liked. I just found this one rather sedate. It probably didn't help that I had seen a documentary about this film before seeing the movie. That took out a lot of the tension and surprise.
September 24, 2014
Best movie I've probably ever seen
September 13, 2014
Werner Herzog's insanity surpasses that of Klaus Kinski's the end result is this glorious spectacle that continues to wow viewers today!
½ September 9, 2014
This is an absurd movie about the absurd things that people do and believe in-- there's nobody left unscathed. Extra half star just for the sheer audacity of it all, way to hammer your point home by actually going out and doing it yourself Herzog
August 31, 2014
Great and weird movie by Werner Herzog
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