Dir: Werner Herzog

DoP: Thomas Mauch

Year: 1977

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Things To Consider

  • Examine how differently Herzog shoots life in Germany with life in America. Germany is cold, grey and isolating, examine the scene where Stroszek busks in an empty alleyway. Compare this with the hopeful way he shoots life on the road in America. The final 15 or so minutes of the film are where Stroszek’s life really comes off the rails, but their shot in an almost romantic way.
  • You couldn’t accuse Herzog of being a romantic though. Stroszek’s life in Germany is tough, he’s isolated and abused making his escape a necessity. Life in America doesn’t stay rosy too long though, he loses his home his girlfriend and is forced to become a criminal. So while the imagery may get a little more hopeful the reality of the situation remains as pessimistic as ever. Pessimism is definitely more in keeping with Herzog’s aesthetic.
  • One of Herzog’s contemporaries Wim Wenders is well known for his road movies and had in 1976 just completed a trilogy of them. What does the road movie represent in film? What did the road represent to German’s in the 70’s? Is there a reading of this film a response to Wenders’ work?

Further Research

Purchase U.S.

Purchase U.K.


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