Signs of Life / Lebenszeichen

West Germany – 1968– black and white

Director: Werner Herzog | Screenwriter: Werner Herzog | Cinematography: Thomas Mauch | Editing: Beate Mainka-Jellinghaus | Music: Stavros Xarhakos | Cast: Peter Brogle, Wolfgang Reichmann | Producer: Werner Herzog | Runtime: 90’

A wounded German paratrooper named Stroszek is sent to the quiet island of Kos with his wife Nora, a Greek nurse, and two other soldiers recovering from minor wounds. Billeted in a decaying fortress, they guard a munitions depot. There's little to do: Becker, a classicist, translates inscriptions on ancient tablets found in the fortress, Meinhart devises traps for cockroaches, Nora helps Stroszek make fireworks using gunpowder from grenades in the depot. Slowly, in the heat and torpor, Stroszek goes mad, drives the others from the fortress, and threatens the city with blowing up the depot. With care, the German command must figure out how to get him down.

Werner Herzog
Filmography (selective)
Aguirre, the Wrath of God (1972)
The Enigma of Kaspar Hauser (1974)
Heart of Glass (1976)
Stroszek (1977)
Woyzeck (1979)
Fitzcarraldo (1982)
Cobra Verde (1987)
Scream of Stone (1991)