Watch Werner Herzog’s Mini-Documentary About The Killers

Slate's Culture Blog
Sept. 18 2012 3:05 PM

Watch Werner Herzog’s Mini-Doc About The Killers

killersherzog
A still from Werner Herzog's short documentary about The Killers

Tonight at 7 pm, Werner Herzog will be directing a live performance by The Killers as part of the American Express Unstaged series. To prepare, I guess, the German auteur made a short documentary about the Las Vegas-based band that, though only seven minutes long, unmistakably bears Herzog’s touch.

“You do have coyotes in the middle of Los Angeles. Do you have wild donkeys on the Strip once in a while?” Herzog asks Brandon Flowers, the band’s frontman, at one point, with his always delightful accent. “A bighorn sheep at Caesar’s Palace?” Of course this is the sort of question the director, both fascinated and repelled by nature, would ask. By its end, Herzog has turned an otherwise slight “meet the band” video into a meditation on artifice and the American West—just check out that long final shot of the creepy animatronic cowboy, mechanically singing away behind a contemporary Las Vegas crooner.

Advertisement

While I’m sorry we didn’t get an extended conversation between Flowers and Herzog about Mormonism, what we do get isn’t bad. Check it out below.

David Haglund is a senior editor at Slate. He runs Brow Beat, Slate's culture blog.

TODAY IN SLATE

Politics

The Democrats’ War at Home

How can the president’s party defend itself from the president’s foreign policy blunders?

An Iranian Woman Was Sentenced to Death for Killing Her Alleged Rapist. Can Activists Save Her?

Piper Kerman on Why She Dressed Like a Hitchcock Heroine for Her Prison Sentencing

Windows 8 Was So Bad That Microsoft Will Skip Straight to Windows 10

We Need to Talk: A Terrible Name for a Good Women’s Sports Show

Politics

Cringing. Ducking. Mumbling.

How GOP candidates react whenever someone brings up reproductive rights or gay marriage.

Music

How Even an Old Hipster Can Age Gracefully

On their new albums, Leonard Cohen, Robert Plant, and Loudon Wainwright III show three ways.

The U.S. Has a New Problem in Syria: The Moderate Rebels Feel Like We’ve Betrayed Them

Homeland Is Good Again! For Now, at Least.

Behold
Oct. 1 2014 11:48 AM An Up-Close Look at the U.S.–Mexico Border
  News & Politics
The World
Oct. 1 2014 12:20 PM Don’t Expect Hong Kong’s Protests to Spread to the Mainland
  Business
Moneybox
Oct. 1 2014 2:16 PM Wall Street Tackles Chat Services, Shies Away From Diversity Issues 
  Life
The Eye
Oct. 1 2014 1:04 PM An Architectural Crusade Against the Tyranny of Straight Lines
  Double X
The XX Factor
Oct. 1 2014 2:08 PM We Need to Talk: Terrible Name, Good Show
  Slate Plus
Political Gabfest
Oct. 1 2014 1:53 PM Slate Superfest East How to get your tickets before anyone else.
  Arts
Brow Beat
Oct. 1 2014 2:24 PM The New Interstellar Trailer Is the Most Exciting Yet
  Technology
Future Tense
Oct. 1 2014 2:26 PM The Apple Graveyard Leave a flower for a dead Apple product.
  Health & Science
Science
Oct. 1 2014 2:36 PM Climate Science Is Settled Enough The Wall Street Journal’s fresh face of climate inaction.
  Sports
Sports Nut
Sept. 30 2014 5:54 PM Goodbye, Tough Guy It’s time for Michigan to fire its toughness-obsessed coach, Brady Hoke.