Michael Goodwin

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Burden Of Dreams Review


Very Good
Burden of Dreams is an odd choice for the Criterion Collection: It's a documentary about the making of a film (Fitzcarraldo) which itself has not even been released on the Criterion label. It's also the only making-of doc that Criterion has ever released (at least to my knowledge).

That said, Fitzcarraldo is strikingly unique in the history of film, and the story behind it is one worth hearing a little more about. It all started haltingly -- with Jason Robards and Mick Jagger, believe it or not, starring in the movie about a crazed rubber baron who wants to build an opera house deep in the Amazon rain forest. But after Robards gets sick and Jagger drops out, the film starts over, with Klaus Kinski in the famous lead role as Fitzcarraldo. Fitzcarraldo isn't just regular-crazy, he's totally nuts: Part of his plan involves dragging an enormous barge over a mile of land in order to reach an otherwise shut-off river, and director Werner Herzog staged this -- for real -- during the making of Fitzcarraldo.

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