The Cave of Forgotten Dreams is the latest documentary from artiste / showman Werner Herzog. It's cinema's first look at the world’s oldest known cave paintings (c. 30,000 B.C.), discovered in 1994 at Chauvet Grotto in southeastern France and immediately locked up to protect the stunning drawings of imposing beasts.
The French government allowed Herzog to make this first documentary about Chauvet because he is a major auteur. His long career depicting energetic lunatics includes 1972’s Aguirre: The Wrath of God, in which a 16th-century conquistador searches in vain for a city of gold amid Brazil’s fever swamps.
You and I will never be allowed in Chauvet.