Magazine article New Statesman (1996)

Werner Herzog, Director, on Nature

Magazine article New Statesman (1996)

Werner Herzog, Director, on Nature

Article excerpt

"My new film, Encounters at the End of the World, is a documentary about Antarctica. There is a strangeness and beauty out there that really attracted my curiosity--it's pure science fiction without any technical trick. All the underwater footage, the footage of the South Pole or the tunnels of ice under Mount Erebus, these are images that haven't been worn out yet in commercials, on television, or in magazine advertisements. This kind of imagery is deeply embedded in our collective soul, but we haven't articulated it yet.

I'm trying to name the glories of the continent. I did not go there to make a documentary about cute penguins, because I am opposed to the Disneyfication of wild nature. I have a very stark view. You can see it in Grizzly Man, you can see it in Fitzcarraldo, I could rattle off 20 other examples of my films. Walt Disney is a bastard child of Romanticism. It's strange that sometimes I have been labelled a romantic, because nobody can be more unromantic than I am.

My style is different from that of television nature documentaries, but I wouldn't put them down; in Great Britain you have some of the finest in the world. I am a David Attenborough fan. I like his excitement, I like the fervour, and how he comes across to an audience is just wonderful. You see the excitement that you feel as a child when you discover for the first time that there are mountains on the moon when you look through a telescope. He transports this kind of excitement, this spirit of wonder, into what he sees and what he presents. The wonder and excitement he and I share makes us brothers. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.