The Enigma of Kaspar Hauser – Werner Herzog

The Enigma of Kaspar Hauser - Werner Herzog
You know where this man has gone before. Or where he would later go.

Nevermind the story. That’s incidental. One type of Herzog film is this one: where a narrative is punctuated by hypnotic imagery that has been rescued from unphotographable places. Ok, story details do inherit the hypnotic and mystical spirit of these images (and of the narrative of their capturing), and so we have Kaspar Hauser as Herzog’s surrogate. A man out of touch with any cultural learning, whose bening articulations are precisely of hypnotic images.

A man who does not recognize danger, not out of courage but simply off an innocent rapport with the world. Someone with enough sensitivity to teach himself Mozart on the piano, and whose initial impulse after learning to write is to keep a journal.

Kaspar Hauser is Herzog. And this movie is one of the several stories of his life. Along the way a scribe ‘reports’ every single detail. That’s doubly meta. Astuce.

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Categories: Notes

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