My Best Fiend Trailer 1999 Herzog Kinski





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Uploaded on Aug 31, 2010

My Best Fiend (German: Mein liebster Feind - Klaus Kinski, literally My Dearest Enemy - Klaus Kinski) is a 1999 documentary film by Werner Herzog about his tumultuous yet productive relationship with German actor Klaus Kinski. It was released on DVD in 2000 by Anchor Bay.
The film opens with shots from one of Klaus Kinski's Jesus tours, in which he performed -- after his own interpretation -- the role of Jesus. Kinski harangues the audience for not paying attention to him, curses wildly, has the microphone taken away from him, and, screaming, steals it back. Kinski had to leave one of these tours in order to star in his first Herzog film, Aguirre, the Wrath of God. This was the first of five films that the two would make together, including Nosferatu the Vampyre (1978); Woyzeck (1978); Fitzcarraldo (1982); and Cobra Verde (1987).

Herzog presents selected pieces of Kinski's biography. Herzog tours a substantially renovated apartment in which he and his family shared with Kinski and other boarders, looks at a film clip of the first time he ever saw Kinski on film, and presents a large amount of footage from the sets of their various movies. Herzog recounts the heated arguments and sometimes violent altercations between them, including the oft-repeated story of Herzog threatening to shoot Kinski should he leave the production of Aguirre. He also draws on footage from Burden of Dreams, a documentary of the making of Fitzcarraldo, a particularly difficult film for their relationship.

The Kinski that Herzog presents, however, is not solely the raving madman he is sometimes remembered as. Herzog has a deep respect for Kinski's acting talent. He also displays a tender side of Kinski. From interviews with two of the women who starred opposite him, Eva Mattes (from Woyzeck) and Claudia Cardinale (from Fitzcarraldo), one would get the impression that Kinski was a loving and gentle, indeed a calm man. The final sequence in the film is a series of shots of Kinski playing with a butterfly in the Peruvian jungle.

Herzog describes Kinski's death as the result of living so strenuously and fully ("like a comet" as he describes it). As he talks, the documentary shows the final scene from Cobra Verde, in which Kinski collapses in the surf as he tries to pull a large boat out to sea. The film, then, is something of an elegy to Kinski, Herzog's dear friend and sometimes foe.


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