When looking for narration about human atrocities, few could rival the analysis of Werner Herzog. His distrust of nature, humanity, and Pokémon Go makes for a cold and distant reaction to various stimuli, a seemingly objective voice that can find existential meaning and crises in even the most fleeting of absurd moments. So, obviously, who better than Herzog to offer up analysis of Kanye West’s “Famous” music video? In a piece for The Daily Beast, the filmmaker stares deep into the simulacrum of naked celebrities on a bed and finds meaning in both West’s concept and in what it means for the internet, a subject he has recently become fascinated with for his new film, Lo And Behold: Reveries Of The Connected World. (Note: The video is NSFW due to lots of fake naked celebrities.)
The Daily Beast video (produced by Jen Yamato and Nathan Place) seems at first almost like another great Paul F. Tompkins gag about Herzog, but with his incisive discussion of doppelgängers, the idea of personas on the internet and distrust bred from technology, and his surprisingly quick recognition of Rihanna, it is abundantly clear that it is the Grizzly Man filmmaker himself.
Herzog is full of praise for West’s video, even saying that he would accept the rapper into his “Rogue Film School” based on the ideas captured in this music video. It’s a fascinating watch that goes through many topics, in the way only Herzog can. But the most shocking twist comes from the fact that the prolific filmmaker, and apparent hater of all things mother nature, also really likes cat videos. If people can get him to narrate or analyze some Grumpy Cat videos, then all will be right with the world.