• Wernerherzog_large

    In November of 1974, German filmmaker Werner Herzog began walking from Munich to Paris. He had just learned that his friend and mentor, the film historian Lotte Eisner, was gravely ill and had been hospitalized in Paris, and Herzog decided to make the journey in a quixotic attempt to thwart her death. “I set off . . . in full faith,” he wrote in his diary, “believing that she would stay alive if I came on foot.” After the trip, Herzog’s written account of the three-week, five-hundred-mile trek was published as a book, Of Walking in Ice (Vom Gehen im Eis). Long out of print, the filmmaker’s journal was recently reissued by the University of Minnesota Press. And now, film scholar and author Noah Isenberg has undertaken a new examination of Herzog’s existential travelogue in a review for the Nation magazine.

    Although much of Herzog’s account concerns his deepening feelings of isolation and loneliness, Isenberg writes that the “musings on his odyssey veer from the prosaic (his subsistence on tangerines and cartons of milk, his desperate search for shelter . . . his blisters and swelling feet) to the deeper questions of history and memory.” And, as is perhaps to be expected, the book is littered with what Isenberg refers to as “Herzogisms,” which include such enigmatic declarations as, “He who has no burning tongue has burning soles.” For more on the story of Herzog’s walk (which Isenberg concludes may be considered “a more extreme version” of Herzog’s “attempts at cinematic salvation”), read the review in full over at the Nation’s website.

4 comments

  • By Nedervetil_7
    February 02, 2016
    06:55 PM

    Herzog is one of the biggest names in my book, of filmmakers alive today...
    Reply
  • By David Hollingsworth
    February 03, 2016
    12:13 AM

    I agree with everything Nederveti_7 said. Herzog is one of the master of cinema, period.
    Reply
  • By jon-not-john
    February 03, 2016
    12:19 AM

    Werner Herzog's concept of Ecstatic Truth has come closer to the goal of cinema than any other pretentious film trope. Cinema is meant to illuminate life and the human experience. Few other film makers have accomplished.
    Reply
  • By RAP
    February 03, 2016
    12:53 PM

    Mr. Herzog was not the first long-distance perambulator to have braved the European countryside. I have it on good authority that Peirescius walked from Paris to Schevling . . . and back again!
    Reply