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Happy People: A Year in the Taiga

  NR Closed Captioning

Werner Herzog & Dmitry Vasyukov

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Plot Summary

With Happy People: A Year in the Taiga, iconic filmmaker Werner Herzog embarks on another unforgettable journey into the heart of a remote natural environment. Deep in the Siberian wilderness, leagues away from civilization, a mere 300 people inhabit the village of Bakhta on the Yenisei river. This outpost can only be reached in two ways: boat and helicopter. There is no running water, no medical aid or even a single telephone. The locals, whose daily routines have hardly changed over the centuries, live self-reliantly according to their cultural traditions. Through insightful narration by Herzog, Happy People follows a few veteran Siberian trappers through the Taiga's four seasons to tell the incredible story of a society untouched by modernity.

Rotten Tomatoes Movie Reviews

TOMATOMETER

87%
  • Reviews Counted: 45
  • Fresh: 39
  • Rotten: 6
  • Average Rating: 6.9/10

Top Critics' Reviews

Fresh: Mr. Herzog is openly inspired, as ever, by the rugged independence of these resourceful trappers, who seem stoic about everything but their faithful dogs. – Nicolas Rapold, New York Times, Jan 24, 2013

Fresh: Herzog has become a master of the understatement - knowing just how long the images can sustain you without a word being said. – Betsy Sharkey, Los Angeles Times, Feb 14, 2013

Fresh: We should be grateful to Herzog for bringing us this remarkable footage, but the real subject of "Happy People" may be his yearning for an imaginary paradise he can't have. – Andrew O'Hehir, Salon.com, Jan 25, 2013

Fresh: It's fitting that this film of people making do with what they have should itself look somewhat humble, without lyricism, a work not of beauty but of work-which is the thing that makes it beautiful, no matter who directed it. – Alan Scherstuhl, Village Voice, Jan 22, 2013

Read More About This Movie On Rotten Tomatoes

Customer Reviews

It is philistine not to recognize what a good movie it is.

Simple truth spoken through the wonderful shots of people and nature.

Excellent

Wow, what a fascinating life. This documentary was very well done. The filmmakers were able to get some fantastic shots and tell a remarkable story. Plus, the music was absolutely beautiful. I personally was hoping to learn more about what happens within the village outside the role of the trappers (family, kids, other professions and activities), but the story was about the trappers and that story was told well.

Excellent Change

People like this amaze me. The seasons are so extreme, and they work so hard in comparison to our way of life in the USA. The filming is superb with most shots very close up. The people speak Russian so there is some reading of subtitles, but not much. If they don't work, they don't eat, and if they don't chop wood, they freeze. This is an excellent change to the snotty movies that are mainstream now.

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Happy People: A Year in the Taiga
View In iTunes
  • $19.99
  • Genre: Documentary
  • Released: 2013

Customer Ratings

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