DIE GROSSE EKSTASE DES BILDSCHNITZERS STEINER
Germany / 1974 / 45'
The Norwegian jump is a playful and happy experience, but there is also another view of the world in the small group of flying men. The film opens with a number of jumps, filmed in snow motion, which end in disastrous falls, accompanied by sideral music of the Popol Vuh. The climax of the film shows Steiner after a fall while training in Planica. He beats the record jump, but falls, slightly banging his head and loses consciousness for a few minutes. The day after he jumps again, wins the competition and conquers his fear. He has his moment of glory, the ovation of 50,000 spectators, the band and the gold medal. Steiner belongs to Herzog’s romantic and visionary heroes who risk their lives for an idea, for a dream: the dream of human flight, the continual conquest of a limit.
Werner Herzog was born in Munich, Germany, in 1942. He grew up in a village buried deep in the Bavarian mountains, where there was neither television nor telephone. When only nineteen and still at high school he used to work nightshifts as a solderer in an iron and steel factory in order to earn money to produce his first film, Herakles (1962). Since then he has produced, written and shot more than forty films, published more than a dozen books and directed several films. His vast filmography includes: The Enigma of Kaspar Hauser: Every Man for Himself and God Against All (1974), winner of the Jury Great prize in Cannes in 1975, Stroszek (1977), Nosferatu (1978), Woyzeck (1979), God’s Angry Man (1980), Fitzcarraldo (1982), which was awarded for the best film production in Cannes in 1982.