After watching Rescue Dawn and the documentary on the making of the movie, I’m more convinced than ever that Werner Herzog is more than a little… well, let’s say ‘touched’.
I’m also of the opinion — quite probably due to his background in documentary filmmaking — that he has created one of the greatest films ever made. Rescue Dawn is incredibly difficult to watch, but so rewarding in the end. Keep in mind that I’m the guy who can watch Miike movies without flinching; thanks to Christian Bale and the “non-aesthetic” filmmaking approach of Herzog,though, this stuff is so fucking real it hurts to watch.
It’s not for everyone — there’s a lot that would make anyone uncomfortable, with torture scenes and POW escape conditions — but for anyone wanting to see how truly terrific an actor Christian Bale is (and Steve Zahn, for that matter), or anyone who only knows Herzog from the utter surrealism of Grizzly Man, this is a must see. Filmmakers — the documentary is even more important, particularly the interviews with the DP (whose name escapes me, and I’m too lazy to Google anything on this fine, fine Saturday).