In the Footsteps of Bruce Chatwin - BBC2

Bruce Chatwin
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Director Werner Herzog honours the spirit of his old friend in In the Footsteps of Bruce Chatwin, a documentary about the writer and traveller

Werner Herzog, director of cult films like Fitzcarraldo, Nosferatu the Vampyre and Grizzly Man,  travels to some of the world’s remotest countries visiting some of the special places that mattered to his friend, the writer and adventurer Bruce Chatwin.

The author of On the Black Hill, Utz and The Songlines first made his name in the 1970s and went on to become best known as a travel writer, though he always considered himself first and foremost to be a storyteller.

Having based his film Cobra Verde on Bruce's 1980 novel The Viceroy of Ouidah, Werner Herzog and Bruce Chatwin became friends.

Werner Herzog with Bruce Chatwin's rucksack

Werner Herzog with Bruce Chatwin's rucksack

When Bruce was dying of AIDS back in 1989, he gave Werner the trusty  rucksack that he’d carried on his travels as a parting gift.

MORE: Werner Herzog's Nosferatu

Now, 30 years on, carrying the battered rucksack, Werner retraces Bruce’s travels to Australia, Patagonia and the Black Mountains of Wales, the place that first inspired Bruce.

Along the way, Werner hears stories of lost tribes and Aboriginal traditions, and explores Bruce’s passion for the nomadic way of life.

TV Times rating: ****

Main picture: Getty

Nicholas Cannon
TV Content Director on TV Times, What's On TV and TV & Satellite Week

I'm a huge fan of television so I really have found the perfect job, as I've been writing about TV shows, films and interviewing major television, film and sports stars for over 25 years. I'm currently TV Content Director on What's On TV, TV Times, TV and Satellite Week magazines plus I previously worked on Woman and Woman's Own in the 1990s. Outside of work I swim every morning, support Charlton Athletic football club and get nostalgic about TV shows Cagney & Lacey, I Claudius, Dallas and Tenko. I'm totally on top of everything good coming up too.