The Great Ecstasy of Woodcarver Steiner (Herzog, 1973): BFI Southbank, NFT1, 8.45pm
This film, part of the Werner Herzog season at BFI Southbank, also screens at the cinema on June 27th. See here for details.
Time Out review:
A film about flying in the face of death. In Steiner's case, the flying
is literal: he is a champion ski-jumper, in Werner Herzog's view the best in
the world because the most profoundly fearless. Convention would call
this a 'documentary reportage', but convention would be wrong: the angle
of approach is wholly unexpected, and Herzog's own participation as
commentator/interviewer/hero-worshipper/myth-maker guarantees a really
extraordinary level of engagement with the subject. Watch especially how
he coaxes a truly revealing story about a pet raven out of a highly
embarrassed Steiner in the closing moments. Herzog, a surrealist to the
core, knows that the real world offers more fantastic phenomena than
anything he can imagine.
Here is an extract.
The film is part of a double-bill with the 1976 doc How Much Wood Would a Woodchuck Chuck.