GREAT ECSTASY OF THE SCULPTOR STEINER (Werner Herzog, 1973)

Steiner is Walter Steiner. A measily two minutes is devoted to his wood carving, while the balance of the film, some three-quarters of an hour, is devoted to his “ecstasy,” ski-jumping—or, as Europeans apparently call it, ski-flying. Needless to say, we get lots of shots of Steiner in slow motion “being ecstatic,” with Werner Herzog on the scene of a championship match, microphone in hand. (Is Herzog’s “ecstasy” being a sports announcer?) Steiner, whose good looks fall somewhere between blandness and glamor, is a star all right, and his disclosure that his mobs of fans come to see him bleed is interesting; but this is a simplistic piece of work.
     Some viewers, however, greet the film with ecstasy.

One thought on “GREAT ECSTASY OF THE SCULPTOR STEINER (Werner Herzog, 1973)

  1. Herzog was required by the German television station that aired the doc to appear on camera.. as I understand it, some of the bits that were edited out from the original 60 min. version (for tv run-time) featured additional footage of Steiner’s woodwork/carpentry.

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