Burden of Dreams
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Documentarian Les Blank, who filmed Werner Herzog Eats His Shoe, trained his cameras on Herzog again, as the eccentric German filmmaker made his epic, Fitzcarraldo, in the Amazon rainforest of Peru. Herzog's production is in trouble right from the start. He begins filming with Jason Robards playing the title role, and Mick Jagger playing Fitzcarraldo's sidekick, Wilbur. With 40 percent of the film shot, Robards becomes ill and goes back to the states, where his doctor will not let him return. Because of the delay, Jagger, with album and tour commitments, is forced to quit the… More

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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 100%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"Les Blank's Burden of Dreams is one of the most remarkable documentaries ever made about the making of a movie."
‑ Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times
"Gramophone music soothes the savage breast, and operatic human excess defines director and obsession as well as his lead character."
‑ Donald J. Levit, ReelTalk Movie Reviews
"A fascinating portrait of a filmmaker pushed to the outer edge of sanity..."
‑ Josh Ralske, All Movie Guide
"It's Fitzcarraldo with affirmed and not sublime biography; in essence, the same film without the pretense of fiction."
‑ Rumsey Taylor, Not Coming to a Theater Near You
"The film is at once funny and, in its depiction of the scant differences between art and megalomania, somewhat frightening."
‑ Dave Kehr, Chicago Reader
"O retrato extraordinário de um cineasta que, como o protagonista de seu filme, se entrega à obsessão por amor à Arte."
‑ Pablo Villaca, Cinema em Cena
"not only captures the dramatic moments where Herzog risks life and limb ... , but he includes small details that provide necessary natural respites from Herzog's 'madness'"
‑ John A. Nesbit, Old School Reviews
"A searing voyeur's peek at two of cinema's most audacious talents -- and megalomaniacs."
‑ Jonathan R. Perry, Tyler Morning Telegraph (Texas)
"[VIDEO ESSAY] Les Blank's haunting documentary about the four years Werner Herzog spent making "Fitzcarraldo" is such an essential companion piece to the actual film that it seems irresponsible for any would-be audience member to view only one of the two."
‑ Cole Smithey, ColeSmithey.com
"Remarkably candid behind-the-scenes documentary."
‑ Dennis Schwartz, Ozus' World Movie Reviews
"Strangely, Burden of Dreams is a better film than Fitzcarraldo, if only because you get to see the fictional portions of the film along with the backstory"
‑ Christopher Null, Filmcritic.com
More reviews for Burden of Dreams on Rotten Tomatoes