The Great Ecstasy of Woodcarver Steiner
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Time Out saysA film about flying in the face of death. In Steiner's case, the flying is literal: he is a champion ski-jumper, in 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.