Movie Review: Cave of Forgotten Dreams (2010) #atozchallenge

This is my entry for “C” in the Blogging A to Z Challenge. Throughout April I will be watching and reviewing a documentary movie from A to Z. Some other “C” documentaries I’ve reviewed include Cane Toads: An Unnatural HistoryThe Case of the Grinning Cat, Ceasefire Massacre, The Clash: Westway to the World,  and Constantine’s Sword .

Title: Cave of Forgotten Dreams
Release Date: 2010
Director: Werner Herzog
Production Company: Creative Differences

This documentary takes us to a place that most human beings will never have access to, Chauvet Cave in southern France.  The cave contains some of the oldest known human paintings, dating back 32,000 years ago.  Herzog’s narration tends toward the melodramatic, but the visuals are stunning, and as Herzog notes filmed under very trying conditions.  Herzog and crew are not shy about letting the camera linger on these amazing paintings and following them along the contours of the cave walls. At one point it’s noted that a painting of a horse that intersects with another horse may have been painted 5000 years apart, a stunning idea that art could be maintained and added to over so long a period of time.  In addition to film inside the cave, Herzog interviews numerous scientists and visits other prehistoric sites and natural locations in the environs that can help us understand what may have been happening in Chauvet.  But the scenes inside the cave are the stars of the film (and if you’re lucky, maybe you can see them in 3-D).

What Can One Learn From Watching This Documentary: This movie is probably the best chance you’ll get to see the earliest works of art by our human ancestors and take a moment to appreciate the core of humanity.
If You Like This You Might Also Want To …: Another window into early humans is the frozen remains of Ötzi the Iceman whom I visited on my honeymoon and learned more about from the documentary Iceman Reborn. The Humans Who Went Extinct explores the Neanderthals who lived alongside our early human ancestors.

Source: I watched this movie on Netflix streaming.

Rating: ***1/2