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Fitzcarraldo (rewatch)

Posted by martinteller on March 1, 2008

I really feel bad for not loving this more than I do.  Herzog poured so much work into it, and in many ways it’s a spiritual cousin to my favorite by him, Aguirre.  But it just doesn’t have quite the same “oomph” for me.  Kinski plays a far more subdued character, and although his natural intensity does shine through, it’s not enough to carry the movie through its slower parts.  After all Herzog went through to get this film shot, I can understand his reluctance to cut anything, but the movie just feels too long (especially all the buildup before getting on the boat).  Another problem is the dubbing — with all the cast speaking different languages, I struggled with the decision to listen to the German track or the English (I finally settled on the English, it seemed to match Kinski’s lips better, and made it easier to concentrate on the visuals).  I don’t want to imply that it’s a bad film, it certainly isn’t.  At its best moments, it’s absolutely transcendent.  There just aren’t enough of those moments.  Rating: 8

IMDb
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