Werner Herzog Eats His Shoe in ‘Werner Herzog Eats His Shoe’

One of the coolest films seeing release in theaters this week is All in This Tea, opening at Cinema Village and directed by legendary documentarian Les Blank. Blank has made dozens of films over a career spanning well over four decades; he is perhaps best known for the notorious Burden of Dreams, his 1982 portrait of Werner Herzog directing Fitzcarraldo in the Amazonian jungle. A couple of years prior to that, however, Blank also made another unbelievable, award-winning film featuring the German auteur. Herzog had once promised to "eat his shoe" if his friend Errol Morris ever finished a film; upon the occasion of the release of Morris's Gates of Heaven, Herzog did just that. Blank's camera captures Herzog simmering his shoe in duck stock with garlic for five hours, then sitting down at a table before a Berkeley audience with a bottle of beer and poultry scissors, fielding questions from the crowd about his friend's achievement. What emerges is a film about following your vision, and finding new and extreme ways to show how much you care. Also, did we mention Werner Herzog eats his fucking shoe? —Bilge Ebiri

Werner Herzog Eats His Shoe, Part Two: