HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
Shazam!
Follow Me
Leto
Fugitive Girls
Missing Link
Chant of Jimmie Blacksmith, The
Pet Sematary
Oh... Rosalinda!!
Dumbo
Kaleidoscope
Night Is Short, Walk On Girl
Knight of Shadows: Between Yin and Yang, The
Puppet Master: The Littlest Reich
Klute
Meow
Killer Crocodile
Nutcracker Prince, The
Secret World of Og, The
Benjamin
Fifth Cord, The
Man Could Get Killed, A
Cyborg 009: Kaiju War
Heavy Trip
Nightmare Weekend
Blue Ice
Great Scout & Cathouse Thursday, The
Incident, The
Hell's Angels
Heaven and Earth
Flatliners
Us
mid90s
Holiday
Lovin' Molly
Manhunt in the City
Click: The Calendar Girl Killer
Teen Witch
Devil's Brigade, The
Luck & Logic
Duel of the Masters
   
 
Newest Articles
Trains and Training: The British Transport Films Collection Volume 13 on DVD
Holiday from Hell: In Bruges on Blu-ray
The Comedy Stylings of Kurt Russell: Used Cars and Captain Ron
Robot Rocked: The Avengers Cybernauts Trilogy on Blu-ray
Hammer's Bloodthirsty Bad Girls 1970: Lust for a Vampire and Countess Dracula
Hammer to Fall: Kiss Me Deadly on Blu-ray
Home of the Grave: The House That Dripped Blood and Asylum on Blu-ray
Wondrous Women: Supergirl vs Captain Marvel
Things Have Changed: Films You'd Be Insane to Make Now
The Hole in the Ground: Director Lee Cronin Interview
She's Missing: Director Alexandra McGuinness Interview
Woo's the Boss: Last Hurrah for Chivalry & Hand of Death on Blu-ray
Get Ahead in Showbiz: Expresso Bongo and It's All Happening
Outer Space and Outta Sight: Gonks Go Beat on Blu-ray
Tucked: The Derren Nesbitt Interview
   
 
  Even Dwarfs Started Small A Little MadBuy this film here.
Year: 1970
Director: Werner Herzog
Stars: Helmut Doring, Paul Glauer, Gisela Hertwig, Hertel Minkner, Gertrud Piccini, Marianne Saar, Brigitte Saar, Gerd Gickel, Erna Gschwendtner, Gerhard Maerz, Alfredo Piccini, Erna Smollarz, Lajos Zsarnoczay, Pepi Hermine
Genre: Weirdo
Rating:  6 (from 2 votes)
Review: The authorities are holding an investigation into a serious incident which occured at one of their mental institutions recently. In that institution, in a remote part of the world, there had been a rebellion and the inmates had overthrown their guards, so that the head of the place had holed up in his office with a hostage, occasionally trying to reason with the siege outside by climbing onto the roof. He had difficulty telephoning for help as the inmates had torn down the lines outside and so a waiting game began, with the patients causing havoc.

Did I mention that everyone in this film, from the inmates to the governor, are played by little people, a fact that is never acknowledged by the characters? This was one of director Werner Herzog's earliest films, and as idiosyncratic as you might expect, although do not anticipate many stunning revelations about the human condition, all of which are very much in the eye of the beholder anyway, because most of the drama is taken up with what is techincally termed "arseing about". It's as if Herzog saw his cast as unruly children thanks to their dimensions, and had them act accordingly, with anarchic results.

So if you ever wanted to see a dwarf riding a motorbike then this is the film for you, and that's not all their antics entail. The inmates go from simply being mischievous to being outright sadistic, but they always take a great amount of glee in their sport, whatever shape it adopts. In some ways this is the 1970, all-dwarf cast version of Jackass The Movie, featuring such stunts as jump aboard the moving van as it goes round in circles driverless, or settle down for dinner only for it to turn into a plate-smashing foodfight. All the way through, the patients are enjoying themselves immensely.

But they are not doing anything constructive with their newfound freedom, which is perhaps Herzog's point: given the chance to do anything they want, chaos rather than a new order is the result. As the governor makes pleas for calm which shouted down go unheard, or complains to his hostage about the awkward position he has been put in, this voice of peace and sense looks increasingly ridiculous, but then, the rioters outside don't come out of this in an especially beneficial light either. Weirdly, the mood is one of crazed good cheer, with the tied up hostage barely able to contain his giggles.

And that's not to mention the laughter of one of the rebels, Hombré (Helmut Doring), the tiniest of the men and the one who stands planted to the spot, grinning and in fits of chortles at every opportunity (except when the others try to make him get married to the tiniest of the women, he is none too keen on that). It's his maniacal laughter, which sounds speeded up but isn't, that gives the film much of its feeling of insanity, and when most of those who have seen it bring to mind this film, it's that crazed chuckling that pops into their heads. The trouble with Even Dwarfs Started Small is that once you get the idea after about the first five minutes, what plot there is has nowhere to go, and you end up watching the rest of it to see how far Herzog will proceed in his quest to find striking imagery. Here, some might say he goes too far.

Aka: Auch Zwerge haben klein angefangen.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 1963 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 

Werner Herzog  (1942 - )

Eccentric German writer/director known equally for his brilliant visionary style and tortuous filming techniques. After several years struggling financially to launch himself as a filmmaker, Herzog began his career with the wartime drama Lebenszeichen and surreal comedy Even Dwarfs Started Small. But it was the stunning 1972 jungle adventure Aguirre, Wrath of God that brought him international acclaim and began his tempestuous working relationship with Klaus Kinski. The 1975 period fable Heart of Glass featured an almost entirely hypnotised cast, while other Herzog classics from this era include Stroszek, the gothic horror Nosferatu the Vampyre and the spectacular, notoriously expensive epic Fitzcarraldo.

Herzog's subsequent work is perhaps less well known but he has continued to direct both provocative feature films (Cobra Verde, Invincible, Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans) and intriguing documentaries, most notably My Best Fiend, detailing his love/hate relationship with the late Kinski and 2005's highly acclaimed Grizzly Man. Herzog has also been the subject of two Les Blank documentaries: Burden of Dreams (about the making of Fitzcarraldo) and the hilarious Werner Herzog Eats His Shoe (in which he does just that).

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star do you think makes the best coffee?
Emma Stone
Anna Kendrick
Michelle Rodriguez
Sir Patrick Stewart
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Andrew Pragasam
  Rachel Franke
Paul Shrimpton
  Desbris M
Enoch Sneed
  Derrick Smith
Darren Jones
   

 

Last Updated: