The encounters are more than the usual cast of animals, ice sheets and driving wind, they’re the PhD’s driving loading equipment, the linguistics experts tilling soil in the greenhouse. The south is where a large number of very intelligent, very interesting “misfits” have carved out a life at the bottom of our planet.
Herzog carves humour and beauty out of the banal exercise of practicing white-out navigation, a blindfolded follow-the-leader game that’s as ridiculous as it is riveting. The silly, scowling masks and sheer inability of the members to keep to a straight line underscore the real dangers of life in the Antarctic.
With Herzog’s view of the pole we see muddy streets and fuel dumps, sad looking bars and friendly outsiders, each with a story to tell. It’s a testament to his art that Herzog’s films continue to find the beauty in the banality of everyday life, even in a place as remarkable as the End of the World. An amusing, amazing personal document of this trip, and a joy to watch.