Werner Herzog goes rogue

One of my favourite filmmakers, the splendidly bonkers Werner Herzog, has created a Rogue Film School.

The deadline for applications is November 13th so, if you fancy a weekend with the director of Aguirre: The Wrath of God, Fitzcarraldo and Grizzly Man, you best get a wriggle on.

You might want to take a look at the website first though. This is no ordinary film school… the clue is in the title.

Here’s some of the things you’ll be doing if you’re application is successful…

The Rogue Film School is about a way of life. It is about a climate, the excitement that makes film possible. It will be about poetry, films, music, images, literature.

…the attention will revolve around essential questions: how does music function in film? How do you narrate a story? (This will certainly depart from the brainless teachings of three-act-screenplays). How do you sensitize an audience? How is space created and understood by an audience? How do you produce and edit a film? How do you create illumination and an ecstasy of truth?

Censorship will be enforced. There will be no talk of shamans, of yoga classes, nutritional values, herbal teas, discovering your Boundaries, and Inner Growth.

But this is my favourite…

Related, but more practical subjects, will be the art of lockpicking. Traveling on foot. The exhilaration of being shot at unsuccessfully. The athletic side of filmmaking. The creation of your own shooting permits. The neutralization of bureaucracy. Guerrilla tactics. Self reliance.

And then Herzog gives one last, important piece of advice.

Follow your vision. Form secretive Rogue Cells everywhere. At the same time, be not afraid of solitude.

In case you’ve only ever seen his films, and never the man himself, here’s some clips from Les Blank’s 1980 short Werner Herzog Eats His Shoe. (Herzog had promised Errol Morris that he would eat his shoe should Morris actually complete his film Gates of Heaven).

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One Response

  1. Just saw this two years later and I want to apply immediately! I wasn’t completely sold on the idea but felt reassured by the guaranteed lack of talk about yoga, shamans or Inner Growth.

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