Encounters at the End of the World Reviews

  • Sep 28, 2019

    As expected, Herzog takes us on an engaging exploration in an unseen realm with enriching narrative that did more than just respect the place's revelation, then taking it far to a surprising extent that is still topically relevant in a form of an early sign. (A-)

    As expected, Herzog takes us on an engaging exploration in an unseen realm with enriching narrative that did more than just respect the place's revelation, then taking it far to a surprising extent that is still topically relevant in a form of an early sign. (A-)

  • Jun 19, 2019

    "The National Science Foundation had invited me to Antarctica even though I had left no doubt that I would not come up with another film about penguins", Herzog states near the beginning of the film, setting the tone for an excellent narration filled with dry humor. It also hints at what distinguishes the documentary from the countless others covering the continent. Most previous documentaries on Antarctica focus on the wildlife, the penguins, whales, and seals. Herzog aims to cover an aspect of the continent far more seldom explored – the character of the men and women who work there and the mindset which brought them to one of the most isolated and inhospitable places on Earth. This is such an interesting and unique topic for a documentary that the film immediately grabbed my interest, but perhaps I shouldn't have been surprised – this is a Herzogian trademark. Herzog is not so much interested in nature itself as he is in what our attempts to coexist with, defy, or destroy nature say about our common humanity. His musings on the subject are almost hypnotic, paired with almost ethereal choral music and beautiful shots of the terrain and fauna which break up the series of interviews. As much as I love penguins, the originality of the subject matter makes me glad that Herzog's considerable film-making skills went toward this project as opposed to another documentary on Antarctica's avian population.

    "The National Science Foundation had invited me to Antarctica even though I had left no doubt that I would not come up with another film about penguins", Herzog states near the beginning of the film, setting the tone for an excellent narration filled with dry humor. It also hints at what distinguishes the documentary from the countless others covering the continent. Most previous documentaries on Antarctica focus on the wildlife, the penguins, whales, and seals. Herzog aims to cover an aspect of the continent far more seldom explored – the character of the men and women who work there and the mindset which brought them to one of the most isolated and inhospitable places on Earth. This is such an interesting and unique topic for a documentary that the film immediately grabbed my interest, but perhaps I shouldn't have been surprised – this is a Herzogian trademark. Herzog is not so much interested in nature itself as he is in what our attempts to coexist with, defy, or destroy nature say about our common humanity. His musings on the subject are almost hypnotic, paired with almost ethereal choral music and beautiful shots of the terrain and fauna which break up the series of interviews. As much as I love penguins, the originality of the subject matter makes me glad that Herzog's considerable film-making skills went toward this project as opposed to another documentary on Antarctica's avian population.

  • Aug 30, 2018

    Werner Herzog is a living legend in my opinion and this film explains why. He is willing to go to the edge of the world to find meaning and purpose- and he finds them in people, geographical objects and even penguins. Herzog goes to a base camp in Antarctica to learn about the inhabitants and why they are there. We learn about the kind of people and the kind of mindset they possess. But this isn't just a point and shoot interview. Featuring gorgeous but humbling vistas of the ice sheets and barren white land there is a poetic quality to the work. A scene featuring a lone penguin walking to its impending doom reeks of existentialist pain. This is a fantastic documentary by the amazing Werner Herzog.

    Werner Herzog is a living legend in my opinion and this film explains why. He is willing to go to the edge of the world to find meaning and purpose- and he finds them in people, geographical objects and even penguins. Herzog goes to a base camp in Antarctica to learn about the inhabitants and why they are there. We learn about the kind of people and the kind of mindset they possess. But this isn't just a point and shoot interview. Featuring gorgeous but humbling vistas of the ice sheets and barren white land there is a poetic quality to the work. A scene featuring a lone penguin walking to its impending doom reeks of existentialist pain. This is a fantastic documentary by the amazing Werner Herzog.

  • Aug 23, 2018

    Werner Herzog is a living legend in my opinion and this film explains why. He is willing to go to the edge of the world to find meaning and purpose- and he finds them in people, geographical objects and even penguins. Herzog goes to a base camp in Antarctica to learn about the inhabitants and why they are there. We learn about the kind of people and the kind of mindset they possess. But this isn't just a point and shoot interview. Featuring gorgeous but humbling vistas of the ice sheets and barren white land there is a poetic quality to the work. A scene featuring a lone penguin walking to its impending doom reeks of existentialist pain. This is a fantastic documentary by the amazing Werner Herzog.

    Werner Herzog is a living legend in my opinion and this film explains why. He is willing to go to the edge of the world to find meaning and purpose- and he finds them in people, geographical objects and even penguins. Herzog goes to a base camp in Antarctica to learn about the inhabitants and why they are there. We learn about the kind of people and the kind of mindset they possess. But this isn't just a point and shoot interview. Featuring gorgeous but humbling vistas of the ice sheets and barren white land there is a poetic quality to the work. A scene featuring a lone penguin walking to its impending doom reeks of existentialist pain. This is a fantastic documentary by the amazing Werner Herzog.

  • Aug 02, 2018

    Werner Herzog is a living legend in my opinion and this film explains why. He is willing to go to the edge of the world to find meaning and purpose- and he finds them in people, geographical objects and even penguins. Herzog goes to a base camp in Antarctica to learn about the inhabitants and why they are there. We learn about the kind of people and the kind of mindset they possess. But this isn't just a point and shoot interview. Featuring gorgeous but humbling vistas of the ice sheets and barren white land there is a poetic quality to the work. A scene featuring a lone penguin walking to its impending doom reeks of existentialist pain. This is a fantastic documentary by the amazing Werner Herzog.

    Werner Herzog is a living legend in my opinion and this film explains why. He is willing to go to the edge of the world to find meaning and purpose- and he finds them in people, geographical objects and even penguins. Herzog goes to a base camp in Antarctica to learn about the inhabitants and why they are there. We learn about the kind of people and the kind of mindset they possess. But this isn't just a point and shoot interview. Featuring gorgeous but humbling vistas of the ice sheets and barren white land there is a poetic quality to the work. A scene featuring a lone penguin walking to its impending doom reeks of existentialist pain. This is a fantastic documentary by the amazing Werner Herzog.

  • Jul 21, 2018

    Werner Herzog is a living legend in my opinion and this film explains why. He is willing to go to the edge of the world to find meaning and purpose- and he finds them in people, geographical objects and even penguins. Herzog goes to a base camp in Antarctica to learn about the inhabitants and why they are there. We learn about the kind of people and the kind of mindset they possess. But this isn't just a point and shoot interview. Featuring gorgeous but humbling vistas of the ice sheets and barren white land there is a poetic quality to the work. A scene featuring a lone penguin walking to its impending doom reeks of existentialist pain. This is a fantastic documentary by the amazing Werner Herzog. (A trip to Antarctica).

    Werner Herzog is a living legend in my opinion and this film explains why. He is willing to go to the edge of the world to find meaning and purpose- and he finds them in people, geographical objects and even penguins. Herzog goes to a base camp in Antarctica to learn about the inhabitants and why they are there. We learn about the kind of people and the kind of mindset they possess. But this isn't just a point and shoot interview. Featuring gorgeous but humbling vistas of the ice sheets and barren white land there is a poetic quality to the work. A scene featuring a lone penguin walking to its impending doom reeks of existentialist pain. This is a fantastic documentary by the amazing Werner Herzog. (A trip to Antarctica).

  • Jun 07, 2018

    A Werner Herzog film is fascinating regardless of the subject and Encounters is no exception. Featuring great shots of Antarctica, much like every Herzog film this one touches you in ways you cannot really express. (Great Herzog film)

    A Werner Herzog film is fascinating regardless of the subject and Encounters is no exception. Featuring great shots of Antarctica, much like every Herzog film this one touches you in ways you cannot really express. (Great Herzog film)

  • Apr 11, 2018

    Never seen a documentary quite like this. First Herzog film I've seen, hopefully not the last.

    Never seen a documentary quite like this. First Herzog film I've seen, hopefully not the last.

  • Dec 24, 2016

    At one point during 'Encounters at the End of the World', a scientist looks into the camera and with frost covering his facial hair and says, "my face is frozen." He then smiles an infectious smile. You get the feeling that the South Pole is his happy place. Documentarian Werner Herzog encapsulates many individuals, mostly scientists who live or or visiting the Antarctic and just about every one is joyous. The viewer gets the impression that each one is having the time of their lives. So much so that one who knows in his heart that he has concluded his work and must leave is sad. As we attempt to transform ourselves into the minds of the subjects Herzog films we understand them. Despite he fact that most of us watching could never do what these people are doing we all want to find the happiness each has, even if just for a second. We all want to be transformed into a world where we can feel like we are making a difference. Who wouldn't want to be around so much positive energy? Herzog lightly guides us by asking questions but the thoughts we generate are unique. The visuals must be seen to be believed. One backdrop looks as though it could be a setting for the original moon landing. Herzog and our journey begins on a plane in Europe. He takes us from the beginning in order to make us a part of the tale. He's a master and doesn't get in the way of the portrait he paints. Instead he marvels right along with us. He's a man that intensely enjoys he does and we are better off for having him. And we're better off for watching this.

    At one point during 'Encounters at the End of the World', a scientist looks into the camera and with frost covering his facial hair and says, "my face is frozen." He then smiles an infectious smile. You get the feeling that the South Pole is his happy place. Documentarian Werner Herzog encapsulates many individuals, mostly scientists who live or or visiting the Antarctic and just about every one is joyous. The viewer gets the impression that each one is having the time of their lives. So much so that one who knows in his heart that he has concluded his work and must leave is sad. As we attempt to transform ourselves into the minds of the subjects Herzog films we understand them. Despite he fact that most of us watching could never do what these people are doing we all want to find the happiness each has, even if just for a second. We all want to be transformed into a world where we can feel like we are making a difference. Who wouldn't want to be around so much positive energy? Herzog lightly guides us by asking questions but the thoughts we generate are unique. The visuals must be seen to be believed. One backdrop looks as though it could be a setting for the original moon landing. Herzog and our journey begins on a plane in Europe. He takes us from the beginning in order to make us a part of the tale. He's a master and doesn't get in the way of the portrait he paints. Instead he marvels right along with us. He's a man that intensely enjoys he does and we are better off for having him. And we're better off for watching this.

  • Dec 07, 2016

    It was good until I passed out

    It was good until I passed out