in about 100 words or less
Canada/ US/ France/Germany/UK 90m, Colour 3D
Director: Werner Herzog; Narration: Werner Herzog
Cave of Forgotten Dreams is a wondrous documentary about the spectacular Upper Palaeolithic art of the Chauvet Cave of southern France. In depicting some of the earliest and most pristine cave art yet discovered, Herzog’s 3D film provides a visual experience which captures the contours of the cave walls which the original artists used in the creation of their images. The documentary also provides a glimpse into Chauvet which otherwise could not be gained, owing to the fact that the cave is virtually closed to all but a few researchers as a means to maintain environmental conditions which have preserved these images. The film’s score as well as Herzog’s use of silence provide a hauntingly beautiful backdrop to Chauvet’s images, and while some of Herzog’s commentary is at times peculiar, Cave of Forgotten Dreams is a mesmerizing film which explores the beauty and creativity which lies at the root of our humanity (Klaus Ming August 2011).