Heart of Glass (Herz aus Glas)

1976

Heart of Glass (Herz aus Glas)

Critics Consensus

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91%

TOMATOMETER

Total Count: 11

72%

Audience Score

User Ratings: 3,115
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Movie Info

A mesmeric production by Werner Herzog about the power and importance of art. A small town in Bavaria has become particularly famous for its beautiful ruby-colored glasswork. The glassblower responsible dies without revealing to anyone the secret of his trademark. His son tries his best to recreate the formula for the ruby glass, or his town may lose their business. Herzog actually hypnotized the actors before they went in front of the camera, and the performances are, as a result, somewhat peculiar and trancelike.

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Critic Reviews for Heart of Glass (Herz aus Glas)

All Critics (11) | Top Critics (3) | Fresh (10) | Rotten (1)

Audience Reviews for Heart of Glass (Herz aus Glas)

  • Apr 04, 2011
    Like many of Herzog's films, "Heart of Glass" deals with the mechanics of obsession. Here (I think) its about the need to control and understand artistic expression and use it as a means to maintain the status quo, which is impossible. Its a hypnotic film and the prophetic speeches of the character 'Hias' are quite marvelous.
    Alec B Super Reviewer
  • Feb 17, 2011
    While atmospheric, "Heart of Glass" does not really feel like any other Werner Herzog movie I have seen. But it still feels like it is suited for his voice, down to the prolonged prologue. This might explain why as unfocused as the movie is at times, it is still worth watching. It's the end of the world, not as we know it, but as Hias(Josef Bierbichler) has foreseen it from 18th century Germany, along with the World Wars of the twentieth century. He also says there are no such things as giants which means he might be a Dodgers fan. The foreman at a glass factory has died. Ordinarily this would be no big deal, right? Except, he was the only one who knew the secret formula for the town's renowned ruby glass and that secret has apparently died with him.(Due to the symbolically crimson color of the glass, it is no surprise it is the lifeblood of the community.) This leads to the fabric of the town being rent asunder, with formerly friendly workers at each other's throats. Next thing you know, cats and dogs will be intermingling... And then there is the end of the world in the slightly perplexing epilogue.
    Walter M Super Reviewer
  • Dec 15, 2009
    A small village is renowned for its "Ruby Glass" glass blowing works. When the foreman of the works dies suddenly without revealing the secret of the Ruby Glass, the town slides into a deep depression, and the owner of the glassworks becomes obssessed with the lost secret.
    Wahida K Super Reviewer
  • Dec 07, 2009
    HEART OF GLASS (1976) Written & Directed by Werner Herzog. Is it possible for a film to be 'genre-less'? If so, does it then become transformed into a moving work of Art? This mesmerising creation of legendary director, Werner Herzog, crosses boundaries that no film before (or since) has dared attempt. And it makes this transition again & again, as seamlessly & seemingly effortlessly as the fairy-tale swan of legend gliding across the surface of a magic lake. Of course, superficially, to say that this film is about loss & man's myriad forms of reaction to that loss is true. But this is a simplistic statement & does not do justice to the vision of its creator. One does not have to scratch very far below the surface to reveal that this is not actually the purpose of the film. It is not an allegorical or metaphorical work or, indeed, even telling a story at all. Its sole intent is to purely depict an alternate Reality .... a world that could be .... that might be .... that may be. A world that is at the same time utterly terrifying & exquisitely beautiful. Each carefully-staged scene is set up, framed & shot with as much loving & tender devotion as the individual brushstrokes of a painting by an Old Master. The fact that Herzog had his actors hypnotised before each days shooting to help actualise this 'other world' is a master-stroke & can be seen as his own personal stamp of genius. My Favourite lines from the film : 1.?But, like sleep-walkers, people walk towards their doom?. 2.?The untidiness of the stars makes my head ache.....(sigh)?. ***** 5 out of 5 stars.
    mirabella 1 Super Reviewer

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