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Fitzcarraldo  [DVD]
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DVD Special Features:
Widescreen (1.85:1) enhanced for 16x9 TVs
Audio commentary with Director Werner Herzog, Producer Lucki Stepic and journalist Norman Itill
Languages: Dolby Digital 5.1/Dolby 2.0 English, German with optional English subtitles
Werner Herzog's lengthy 1982 fever dream is typical of the director's passion for boundless experience: the story concerns the title character's determination to open a shipping route over the Amazon as well as build an opera house (worthy of Caruso) at a river trading post. Klaus Kinski (star of Herzog's Aguirre, the Wrath of God) plays the visionary/madman with a spooky dignity, and Herzog--as always--thrills to the mystic possibilities of filming where no one else would even think of placing a camera. --Tom Keogh, Amazon.com --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.See all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
I would still highly recommend this film, a dazzling picture about one man's overwelming desire to bring his vision to life - an opera house in the South American jungle.
The problem with the bonus disc, which contains the Burden of Dreams documentary, is more superficial. The icon which is supposed to show you which option you are choosing is absent from the main menu, and it appears in the wrong places on the scene selection menu, e.g. half on the picture of a scene and half off of it.
I had to return this DVD because of its subtitle problem. I contacted the DVD's maker, Anchor Bay, about its faults but didn't receive a response.
For all the fireworks between Kinski and Herzog, they bring the best out of each other: Kinski is every inch the obsessed dreamer and you really believe he HAS to bring opera to the jungle in a way that you simply can't imagine Jason Robards pulling off (Robards left the film after falling ill: from the brief extracts of his scenes with Mick Jagger to appear in the documentary Burden of Dreams - not included on the single-disc version but available separately from Criterion or in the two-disc edition from Starz - it was a blessing in disguise for the film). What's more, by the end of the movie, you really feel that Fitzcarraldo has earned his small triumph, and the wondrous smiles on the faces of Kinski and Claudia Cardinale prove that cinema's greatest weapon is the human face.Read more ›
This is an epic. Special effects are redundant in this film as much of what actually is done is not a work of simulation but it was actually performed. The cover of the video shows a sail barge being hoisted over land - that was actually done! So much of this film will just stop you in your tracks and think "wow" at just the scale and grandeur of the filming project.
You have to appreciate Operah to appreciate this film, though one way or another if you ever love anything so much that you would want to reshape the land then you will understand and love the sentiment that this film contains.
I loved this film, and though essentially it is a tragedy, unlike most tragic films the ending burns with triumph and finishes leaving you thinking that even things that at first seem impossible are at least worth attempting.
Will be replacing with a copy from another stockist.
This two and a half hour German film released in 1982 is one of Werner Herzog’s best movies. It reads mostly as a homage to crazy visionaries, people whom Herzog clearly identifies with. Based on a true story, but taking considerable liberties with the truth, this film tells the story of one Brian Sweeney Fitzgerald (Klaus Kinski, who is terrific), an opera mad Irish entrepreneur living in Iquitos, in the Peruvian Amazon in the late 19th century. Fitzgerald was called Fitzcarraldo by the locals, who found his original name difficult to pronounce. A plan by him to build a railway crossing the Andes had failed, and his next project of making ice wasn’t going anywhere. After a talk with a rubber baron, he came up with a new plan: to exploit rubber in a very remote part of the Amazon rainforest and with the profits made from the venture build an opera house in Iquitos. For that purpose, he buys a river boat with money from the madam of a brothel (played by Claudia Cardinale) who sympathizes with him. He hires a rowdy crew to accompany him in his boat to his jungle tract, including a nearsighted captain, a drunken cook and a giant Indian called Cholo. Now, the area where he had the concession to exploit rubber trees could only be accessed through a river with impossible rapids to cross. But a navigable river ran nearby, and he came up with the idea of carrying the whole boat between the rivers with the help of nearby Indians. Only problem, those Indians were hostile head hunters, known to kill previous trespassers in the area.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
... one of my favourites, and with the fascinating addition of The Burden of Dreams.Published 2 months ago by E. Kinneir
A tour de force. Great movie, great (true) story. Klaus Kinski is brilliant as usual...And then there is the story behind the story....Published 14 months ago by amira muammar
So says Claudia Cardinale’s Molly in support of her partner, Klaus Kinski’s obsessive Brian Sweeney Fitzgerald ('Fitzcarraldo’) and his plan to bring Caruso’s opera to the remotest... Read morePublished 16 months ago by Keith M