Awarded the Best Documentary at the Edinburgh International Film Festival in 2008, Encounter at the end of the World has received immense appreciation. This documentary film made by Werner Herzog was completed in the year 2007. It has appeared amongst many critics lists of top ten best films of 2008 and also received a Special Prize at the Planet Doc Review Festival 2008 held in Warsaw.
This documentary is based on the trip made by Herzog to the Antarctic and unravels life of people and culture there.The title of the movie signifies the journey to the farthest corner of earth – South Pole and its population. Herzog and his cinematographer go to Antarctic to capture the unique landscapes and also meet the people living in that region.
They live at the McMurdo Research Station and start their exploration by interviewing the people at the station. They visit a seal camp, a diving camp, Mount Erebus and witness the launch of a giant helium balloon and penguin marching. In the course, they meet scientists, zoologists, journeymen and many others. They explore the ferocious creatures, horrifying carnage of the undersea world, collect specimens and film seals singing to each other.
The movie reveals the strange population of Antarctic like a woman who zips herself into a luggage or the communication drill with people practicing in blizzard conditions. The underwater photography with the otherworldly looking creatures, jelly fishes is simply amazing. Everything in the movie seems like it is happening by chance, which is not the case and makes the movie more engaging. The way Herzog highlights the problem of global warming with informal conversations filled with humor is appreciable. Though Herzog does not appear on the camera in the entire movie, his voice continuously offers a tour guide of this wonderful destination.
Encounter at the end of the world is a travelogue has been spiked with Herzog’s quirky observations about the people he met, thoughts he had and sights he saw. Herzog’s documentary inspires people to visit the most stunning and not easily accessible landscape on earth - Antarctica.