Heading Towards Certain Death
In his documentaries, German filmmaker Werner Herzog has made poetic pessimism his trademark. His voice overs seem to bask in the bleakness of their own words, sometimes making it hard to gauge whether he is serious or jesting.
Peet Gelderblom’s mash-up plays on this aspect by combining audio from Herzog’s antarctic documentary Encounters at the End of the World with footage from a very different kind of icy movie: the animated musical Happy Feet. The result is a surrealist clash of heavy-handed narration and lighthearted visuals. It’s a clash that, for one thing, reveals the appetite for Hollywoodian hyperboles in Herzog’s dramatic narration.
Heading Towards Certain Death is the third instalment of Pretty Messed Up, a limited series of conceptual movie mashups by Peet Gelderblom (directorama.net). You may know Gelderblom from his side-by-side montage that pitted Hitchcock against De Palma in a Split Screen Bloodbath (vimeo.com/193068848), or from his Director’s Cut of Raising Cain (directorama.net/raising-cain-directors-cut/).
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