Parle-t-on de docu-fiction quand un acteur jouant son propre rôle doit mimer des scènes du passé, seul parlant, entravé par le réalisateur, entouré de figurants amateurs choisis pour leur plastique ? Dieter Dengler raconte son histoire comme si elle se déroulait à nouveau, pleine de vie et charriant les morts... Un très beau film.
Documentary story-telling as just that: ripping a good yarn. A beautifully observed film that gives one man the room to tell the story of (most of) his life. There's no scope to challenge or question what's being told, and the use of Vietnamese men as stand in props/mannequins is absurd and atrocious, but the film encompasses it all within it's scope. It's flawed, but that must surely be the point.
Strong, very personal documentary. However, it felt like a rather silly excuse the moment Dieter tells us he realised there were people down there suffering and dying only after he became their prisoner. If I was joining the military, flying a war plane over Vietnam dropping bombs on someone's head this realisation would come to me a bit earlier...
"How Dieter Dengler has been able to cope with all of this remains a mystery. He hides behind the casual remark that this was the fun part of his life." The casual matter-of-fact way in which he related his story was amazing. An unspoken message to just live your life as best you can with a positive outlook, even when horrible things happen.
Herzog's fascination with humanity pushed to the furthest extremities of experience and endurance finds an ideal subject: war hero and aeroplane obsessive Dieter Dengler. His mind-blowing story is told with a matter of factness that meshes seamlessly with Herzog's own narrative style. Cinema that delves deep into humanity.
A remarkable film about a remarkable man, but the wasteland of airplanes in which he found comfort were weapons of mass destruction in the hands of his adopted country. How many unsung heroes, heroines and innocents were massacred during the US 'adventure' in Vietnam?
Why is nobody here talking about the images? Fuck your story talk and platitudes. You just saw hallucinatory dream-images explode against others equally disorienting, mirroring Dieter's chains of nightmare images in words—all of it from life—until the line we see from this side of madness became dust. You should now see reality in a way that simply opening an unlocked door is right out of the book of Revelations.
calm, reserved, surreal and almost detached recounting of some intense stories that tell the worthlessness of life under the forces of nature, fear, anger, the big guys and their zealous. all these originated from a simple obsession to fly (and the histories of tragedies at least since WWII).
To be rendered speechless at the end of this remarkable doc about a more-than-remarkable man is perhaps the most accurate commentary one could make. It asks, is there a “Dieter” in each of us? Is this level of life’s intensity, which can only be measured at each appointment with death, discovered in the living of it, the surviving, or the retelling? Herzog is a master of film. Dengler, of life.