To some, Werner Herzog is an austere and bold filmmaker, one of the leading lights to emerge from the New German Cinema. To most people, though, he’s the forever welcome weirdo who crops up to steal bits of things like Parks and Recreation, that Penguins of Madagascar spinoff, and, of course, The Mandalorian. He’s a great interview, too, prone to, say, calling Jon Favreau a “coward.” So, when he was randomly interviewed for a skateboarding culture site Jenken — why not! — it was the opposite of boring.
Why was the director of Aguirre, the Wrath of God and Fitzcarraldo interviewed about skateboarding? It’s not clear! But he threw himself whole hog into the subject, even though it was new to him. “I am puzzled because I am not familiar with the scene of skateboarding,” Herzog told his host. “At the same time, I had the feeling that, ‘Yes, that is kind of my people.’”
He even found a perplexing beauty in it. “I see [skateboarders] trying to slide on a metal rail. They do it 25 times and fail. The 26th time, they fail. The 30th… it’s good that you accept failure,” he said. He even found an uniquely Herzogian comparison in the plethora of skateboarding videos. “What comes to mind first and foremost would be Russian Orthodox Church choirs,” he said. “Something that creates this kind of strange feeling of space and sexuality.”
You might ask yourself, “Did the villain from Jack Reacher somehow connect skateboarding to magician David Blaine?” If so, you’re in luck. “I know that David Blaine shouldn’t be trusted in this kind of quest,” he explained. “It’s this kind of absurd quest, and they are meant only for his own publicity.”
You can watch the whole chat in the video above, and then maybe you can chase it with that infamous interview from the mid-aughts in which he’s shot with a BB gun yet still manages to continue talking, even as he bleeds.
(Via The AV Club)