Little Dieter Needs To Fly

Werner Herzog

Germany 1997

Dieter Dengler got out of Laos in 1966, but what happened in the months before he escaped from the hell of being a prisoner of the Vietnam war still haunts the mind of this physically fit and healthy middle-aged man.

Herzog takes Dengler not only back to Laos, but also to Germany, where he was born and where little Dieter learned that he needed to fly. From the windows of his house in Wildberg he saw the airplanes attacking and dropping bombs during World War II and he knew from that very moment what he wanted to do in life. In postwar Germany he learned to build church clocks and was educated as a blacksmith, but his only wish was to cross the Atlantic to become a pilot. At eighteen he left for Bremerhaven, got extremely seasick on the boat to the USA, and after spending a couple of years as a recruit in the army peeling potatoes, learned to fly. And then he was off to Vietnam. His dream was fulfilled: he was a pilot.

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