Encounters at the End of the World documents Werner Herzog’s journey to Antarctica, where he observes the animal life native to the bottom of the world – above and below the thick ice that’s now thinning – and examines the similarly bizarre human life that gravitates there.
This film is not currently playing on MUBI but 30 other great films are. See what’s now showing
Herzog puts together a beautiful documentary: it's personal and global at the same time, and it speaks to a lot of audiences. I simply love the penguins segment because it is so sad, poor crazy bird. He also meets with a bunch of cool characters, but searching for the wild life, the people and the poetry, he lost me into these paths.
I've watched this film half a dozen times. I think of these people, in the course of my life. I think of ice cream in Antarctica, evolution as escape from horror, the obstinately dapper vulcanologist, the nihilistic penguin, the well-preserved sturgeon, the packed bag, Shackleton in the styrofoam... Every scene is iconic. "Rapturous truth that transcends the factually mundane" says Roger Ebert. Documentary poetry.
Herzog's voice and sharp irony is perfect for the narration of these stories. And also to find what could such diverse humans beings living in Antarctica have in common. Maybe this is a film that has already inspired a few to find out what it takes to be admitted to work at McMurdo Base. The name of the documentary is important. And relates to what travallers also report: you recognize those that are like you inside.
I've become entranced by the world of Herzog's documentaries. he has such an unusual way of examining the world. this film was funny, strange, moving, poetic, and beautiflu. the cinematography, the music, the narration were fantastic. not suprising is it that herzog would be so fascinated by life at 'the end of the world'
A thoughtful, ponderous, and overall human exploration of life and history at Antarctica. Fantastic shots and the great respect given to the images makes this one a beauty to watch. Even ventures into spiritual/mythological dimensions with some colorful insights.
There's no travel guide quite like Werner Herzog, and in this masterful documentary, he delves into the strangeness of a truly strange land. For all the breathtaking, surreal but factual imagery - all set to an unusual, hypnotic score - what's most fascinating are the odd lives and personalities of the eccentrics he finds there. Maybe not quite a Herzog masterpiece, but a fascinating piece of work.
This is the first documentary I've seen from Herzog and I'm pleased to say I enjoyed it. The people he meets at the end of the world are truly fascinating. Some of the images are very beautiful but hearing the locals (If you can call them that) talk about what it's like to be in Antarctica is what truly grabs you and what makes you want to experience it for yourself. Overall it's a great documentary.