Ice Friday: Herzog’s “Kaspar Hauser”

Werner Herzog reflects on his 1977 film Kaspar Hauser:

I had a seven-minute-long sequence between Kaspar and an impoverished farmer in the countryside. The farmer in his despair had killed his last surviving cow. It was a very intense and beautiful scene, but somehow disrupted the flow of the story. It meant that the audience would have to take some time to get back into the story once the scene was over.
IMG_4898So I threw it out even though it was one of the two or three best sequences I had shot. I am not speaking here of the mechanics of the story. It fit in the story and it made a lot of sense when placed in context of the story of Kaspar being pushed into the world around him. But there was something about it that disrupted the flow of the film in terms of how I felt the audiences would receive it; they were detoured too far, and the return journey would have been too arduous. IMG_4900In such a case, as I work for the audience and for no one else, I had no problem throwing the scene out.*

(*From Herzog on Herzog, Interviews conducted by Paul Cronin.)