13 Sep 2011

Werner Herzog - an apparition?

Once, sometime perhaps in February of hmmm 2009(?) I have gone for a stroll in the direction of Nicastro - a good local Italian delicatessen, well stocked in good variety of quality cheese and all array of pricey charcuterie... A place you can order a sandwich or a cup of aromatic espresso.
While waiting for our salami to be sliced I saw a man to the left of me. He ordered a sandwich.
OMG, I know this voice. He wore a cap, was tall and but since I have never seen Werner Herzog "al dente" I have decided it must have been him.
Maestro himself in Ottawa!
http://www.thestickingplace.com/books/books/werner-herzog/extracts/

At the bleakest of bleak, at the very end of February or March, this god forsaken place needs a miracle. I behaved graciously and did not bother the man with any fan-like approaches.
My heart pounded, but a man - even a genius - deserves to order his sandwich in peace.

But I left the little delicatessen with the feeling that Ottawa has become a different place, a place on the map of he history of art and all great things that matter.
It no longer mattered whether this man was really the great W. Herzog, the director of Firzgerraldo, of Woyzeck, of The Enigma of Caspar Hauser, of Stoszek, Aquirre and Cobra, and famous documentaries.
I have experienced a miracle of faith, of inspiration.
I had amused myself with the excitement of this miniscule event and of the intense mystification that follows, of its undeniable, colourful pleasantness.
I guess, in the middle of winter blahs one needs to invent.

I have later tried to find out on Google whether he might have really been here.
Well, never know, he could have stopped at the Carleton U Film Dept or to visit a friend on a way to the Toronto Film Festival where he was a juror that year.
Regardless, the strength of my inspired belief had made the day shine 'til dawn, and Ottawa feels like a much bigger city now.

Not content with voyaging up the Amazon or making acclaimed documentaries about grizzly men, it seems that Werner Herzog also helps out Hollywood movie stars in peril.
When Walk the Line star Joaquin Phoenix overturned his car on a winding Los Angeles sideroad last Thursday, it was the 63-year-old German director who sprang to his rescue.
Phoenix, who received a best actor Oscar nomination earlier this week, flipped his car over when the brakes failed on a road above Sunset Boulevard. As he lay, disorientated, in the wreckage, he heard a gentle tap on the passenger window.
 http://www.guardian.co.uk/film/2006/feb/03/news2
More posts on my favourite film director here:
Herzog - Essentially Baroque Artist
and here:
Death in Five Voices
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