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My Best Fiend (1999)

Mein liebster Feind - Klaus Kinski (original title)
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In the 1950s, an adolescent Werner Herzog was transfixed by a film performance of the young Klaus Kinski. Years later, they would share an apartment where, in an unabated, forty-eight-hour ... See full summary »

Director:

Werner Herzog
1 win & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Credited cast:
Werner Herzog ... Himself - Narrator / Interviewer
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Claudia Cardinale ... Herself
Justo González Justo González ... Himself
Paul Hittscher Paul Hittscher ... Himself (archive footage)
Mick Jagger ... Himself - Wilbur (archive footage)
Klaus Kinski ... Himself (archive footage)
Tom Luddy ... Himself (archive footage)
Eva Mattes ... Herself
Thomas Mauch ... Himself (archive footage)
Benino Moreno Placido Benino Moreno Placido ... Himself
Beat Presser Beat Presser ... Himself
Jason Robards ... Fitzcarraldo (archive footage)
Guillermo Ríos ... Himself (archive footage)
Walter Saxer ... Himself (archive footage)
Lucki Stipetic Lucki Stipetic ... Himself (archive footage)
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Storyline

In the 1950s, an adolescent Werner Herzog was transfixed by a film performance of the young Klaus Kinski. Years later, they would share an apartment where, in an unabated, forty-eight-hour fit of rage, Kinski completely destroyed the bathroom. From this chaos, a violent, love-hate, profoundly creative partnership was born. In 1972, Herzog cast Kinski in Aguirre, the Wrath of God (1972). Four more films would follow. In this personal documentary, Herzog traces the often violent ups and downs of their relationship, revisiting the various locations of their films and talking to the people they worked with. Written by L.H. Wong <lhw@sfs.org.sg>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

Germany | UK | USA

Language:

German | English | Spanish

Release Date:

7 October 1999 (Germany) See more »

Also Known As:

My Best Fiend See more »

Filming Locations:

Peru See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$7,677, 7 November 1999

Gross USA:

$95,612
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby SR

Color:

Black and White (archive footage)| Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film details the long and often complicated relationship between Werner Herzog and Klaus Kinski. The film also the last collaboration between Herzog and his friend since school, Florian Fricke of Popul Vuh. Ficke composed the score of many of Herzog's most famous films and passed away in 2001. See more »

Quotes

Kinski: No, He didn't say shut up...
[now screaming:]
Kinski: He took a whip and smacked their stupid faces! That's what he did, you stupid pig! And if only one of you wants to hear me he has to wait until this fucking scum has left!
See more »

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User Reviews

Utterly fascinating documentary about the extraordinary Klaus Kinski. Absolutely essential viewing for all Kinski buffs!
17 March 2003 | by InfofreakSee all my reviews

'My Best Friend' is one of the most fascinating documentaries I've ever seen about movies and acting. Werner Herzog and Klaus Kinski only made five movies together, but what extraordinary movies they are! Kinski made many, many movies, many of them absolutely awful (though all worth watching even if only for him). In fact it's difficult to think of any other actor of his undoubted talent who slummed it quite as much as he did. Herzog is regarded as one of Germany's greatest ever directors and made many fine movies without Kinski, but the two together were really something special. Just watch the astonishing 'Aguirre: The Wrath Of God' if you want to be floored by total genius! Much of this documentary deals with the trials and tribulations of that movie's troubled shoot, but their other four collaborations are also discussed. Their relationship was a complex one and really hard to get your head around. At times they literally tried to kill each other, but then there's footage included that shows their obvious warmth and affection for each other. You could say that this documentary provokes more questions than answers, and if you are looking for a straightforward explanation of Kinski's behaviour and what Herzog REALLY thought about him then maybe you could regard this as a failure. Anyway, I was enthralled and I think any fan of Kinski must regard this as essential viewing. From the opening footage of a raving Kinski on stage proclaiming he was Christ to the final moments of a butterfly flitting around his face this is mesmerizing stuff, and not to be missed by anyone with every a remote interest in this unique actor. Highly recommended!


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