American Movie
directed by Chris Smith

Gods and Monstrosities
"I am clinically sane," Werner Herzog insists in one of the clashes he had over a decade-long working relationship with the late actor Klaus Kinski. In his documentary-memorial My Best Fiend, Herzog reviews that battle of egomaniacs with dignified candor. Speaking in English over the original German narration, Herzog recalls outrageous Kinski incidents with an eerie calm that eventually sounds quite personal, as if measuring pain, balancing it. Respect stabilizes Herzog's account, presenting something different from the hysterical biography Kinski published in 1976 ("I helped him invent particularly vile expletives about me," Herzog admits). My Best Fiend uses on-the-set outtakes and recent interviews with Kinski costars Claudia Cardinale, Eva Mattes and others to create a scrapbook effect of Herzog's most inspired, mad-genius period.